28th Wednesday in Ordinary Time

  FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD Wednesday October 17, 2018 Twenty-eighth Week of Ordinary Time  WORD of the DAY   Teacher, by saying this you are insulting us too. (Luke 11: 45)  How shall I live this Word? Jesus continues his preaching without mincing words, denouncing attitudes and behavior that are atheistic, but clothed in religiosity. He addresses the Pharisees and highlights how this rampant atheism is evident, and that injustice also arises from their actions. A group of Pharisees, even doctors of the Law, are offended and express it saying how Jesus is attacking men of God. Jesus does not stop and responds to the declaration of offense, highlighting another unjust aspect of the presumed men of God: interpreting the Word of God in a moralistic way, translating it into a thousand precepts to be respected and emptying it of life and meaning.  Lord, defend us from fundamentalism and moralism that distance us from faith and make us see life and creation with evil eyes.  The Voice of Pope Francis  Today I would like to pause to consider this special relationship that Jesus has with the crowd. People follow Him and listen to Him because they feel that He speaks in a different way, with the authority that comes from being authentic and coherent, without ambiguity and ulterior motives. There is joy and happiness when listening to the Master. People bless God when Jesus speaks, because His speech includes everyone, addressing them persons and makes them the people of God. You have noticed that only the scribes and Pharisees, whom Jesus accuses of hypocrisy, always ask: “To whom... read more

Christ and the Priesthood 

Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B – October 21st, 2018 The readings for the 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time of Cycle B invite us to prayerfully consider the priesthood and priestly ministry. The first reading is the passage of Isaiah’s mysterious suffering servant who takes upon himself the people’s iniquity (Isaiah 53:2-11). The second reading speaks of Christ the high priest, tried in every way like us but sin, and the Gospel passage speaks of the Son of Man who has come to give his life in ransom for many (Mark 10:35-45.) These three passages bring to light a fundamental aspect of the heart of priestly ministry and one that we celebrate together as God’s people in the Eucharistic mystery. Knowing that many priests around the world are reading these reflections each week, I offer these thoughts on the priesthood that are particularly inspired by the second readings from this Sunday and next Sunday (Hebrews 4:14-16 and 5:1-5). Isaiah’s mysterious servant First, allow me to offer a brief thought on today’s reading from the prophet Isaiah (53:10-11). Isaiah’s mysterious figure of the “suffering servant” is not only a sign of God’s love for us, but he also represents all human beings before God. Only God appreciated his servant’s true greatness. Because he suffered, he was regarded as a sinner and therefore as one to be spurned. Because the servant fulfilled the divine will by suffering for the sins of others, the servant will be rewarded by the Lord. Jesus, our great High Priest In the letter to the Hebrews 4:14-16, the author calls Jesus a great high priest... read more

Fr. Harry Rasmussen, SDB – RIP

Fr. Harry W. Rasmussen, SDB, passed away last evening, Monday, October 15, in the Salesian Residence, at the age of 87. Kindly remember him and the confreres of the St. Andrew province in your prayers.  Funeral arrangements pending.  Obituary to follow. Personal testimony from the Vancouver Archdiocese website: I have found lots of joy in being available to do God’s work wherever he has called me by Father Harry Rasmussen, SDB I am a Catholic priest and a member of a community of brothers and priests called the Salesians of Don Bosco. I grew up in the capital city of the state of Minnesota: St. Paul. I graduated from a Catholic elementary school there and from a Catholic high school run by the Brothers of the Christian Schools (De La Salle Brothers). My mother, Harriet, was a cradle Catholic. My father, Walter, became a Catholic before marrying my mother. They were both very supportive of my decision to begin my preparation to become a Salesian right after I completed my high school studies in 1949. It was usual in those days for young people to enter a seminary or a convent before, or right after high school. The first Salesian I ever met gave a vocation talk about the founder of the Salesians, St. John Bosco, when I was in Grade 10. Slowly but surely, there developed in me a strong desire to follow Christ in the style and spirit of Don Bosco. The Salesians offered the possibility of work for youth, especially for needy and troubled youngsters. I could see myself doing that. I was also attracted by the... read more
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