First Saturday of Ordinary Time

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD First Saturday of Ordinary Time 18 January 2020 WORD of the DAY Once again he went out along the sea. All the crowd came to him and he taught them. As he passed by, he saw Levi, son of Alphaeus, sitting at the customs post. He said to him, “Follow me.” And he got up and followed him. While he was at table in his house, many tax collectors and sinners sat with Jesus and his disciples; for there were many who followed him. Some scribes who were Pharisees saw that he was eating with sinners and tax collectors and said to his disciples, “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?” Jesus heard this and said to them [that], “Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.” (Mark 2: 13-17) How shall I live this Word? Having embraced our human nature, Jesus acts in a fully human way. In today’s Gospel, we meet Him in the home of Levi, the rich tax collector. He is at dinner with many invited guests who are not models of...

First Friday of Ordinary Time

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD First Friday of Ordinary Time 17 January 2020 WORD of the DAY Many gathered together so that there was no longer room for them, not even around the door, and he preached the word to them. They came bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. Unable to get near Jesus because of the crowd, they opened up the roof above him. After they had broken through, they let down the mat on which the paralytic was lying. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Child, your sins are forgiven.”… he said to the paralytic, “I say to you, rise, pick up your mat, and go home.” He rose, picked up his mat at once, and went away in the sight of everyone. They were all astounded and glorified God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this.” (Mark 2: 2- 5/ 11-12) How shall I live this Word? The joyful statement of the people witnesses to the fascination that Jesus exercises with a power that is all in function of the people’s good and it is very great. When was it ever seen that in order to approach...

First Wednesday of Ordinary Time

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD First Wednesday of Ordinary Time 15 January 2020 WORD of the DAY The Lord came and stood there, calling out as before: Samuel, Samuel! Samuel answered, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” …Samuel grew up, and the Lord was with him, not permitting any word of his to go unfulfilled.  (1 Samuel 3: 10/19) How shall I live this Word? Among the prophetic books that are part of the Old Testament, there are also two books of Samuel. The dominant figure is that of Samuel, a young man totally open to the dictates of God, a young man who, according to the usage of the time, was serenely at the service of the great priest Eli. The Word of God highlights the value of an obedience that is born from the pure heart of a young person. He is not servile but rather illumined by obedience to Eli who is God’s representative and thus fulfills the divine plan and, at the same time, he fulfills himself. Every true good comes to Eli and then the blessing also descends on those who are in relationship to him. Lord, I want to focus well on...

First Tuesday of Ordinary Time

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD First Tuesday of Ordinary Time 14 January 2020 WORD of the DAY Then they came to Capernaum, and on the Sabbath he entered the synagogue and taught. The people were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes. (Mark 1: 21-22) How shall I live this Word? The authority of Jesus is like the sun when it rises to brighten the day. But at noon and in the first afternoon hours, it is advisable not to expose oneself too much. Too much sun can cause grave consequences. The human-divine Person of Jesus certainly did not lack that authentic value which is authoritativeness, like the sun that revives your strength when you expose yourself to it. Authoritarianism, on the other hand, is the opposite. It manifests itself when the person is self-centered and seeks approval, praise, agreement, and even the subjection of those who share life with them. Jesus, so rich in tenderness with each person, had very strong words towards scribes and Pharisees. He called them hypocrites; in fact authoritarianism is a form of betrayal. When true, authority conceives love as a service to...

Saturday 11 January 2020

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD Saturday 11 January 2020 WORD of the DAY Now there was a man full of leprosy in one of the towns where he was; and when he saw Jesus, he fell prostrate, pleaded with him, and said, “Lord, if you wish, you can make me clean.” Jesus stretched out his hand, touched him, and said, “I do will it. Be made clean.” And the leprosy left him immediately. (Luke 5: 12-13) How shall I live this Word? The necessary and sufficient condition for receiving attention and healing from Jesus is to recognize ourselves as sick, as this figure of the leper teaches us and that we could define as the patient par excellence. As long as we are surrounded by the tremendous and putrid leprosy which is sin, we are deprived of the original beauty and we obscure our resemblance to God. One of the most decisive operations of the Holy Spirit when He acts in us, is to convince us about our sin. Docile to the action of the Spirit, we mature a more attentive and penetrating gaze on our own gestures, on our ways of thinking, on our attitudes, on our...

Friday 10 January 2020

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD Friday 10 January 2020 WORD of the DAY He stood up to read and was handed a scroll of the prophet Isaiah. He unrolled the scroll and found the passage where it was written: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring glad tidings to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord. Rolling up the scroll, he handed it back to the attendant and sat down, and the eyes of all in the synagogue looked intently at him. He said to them, “Today this scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.” (Luke 4: 17-21) How shall I live this Word? Many people are willing to listen to teachings, lessons, insights also regarding religion, the Bible, spirituality. Many are willing to reserve spaces for these interests. However, for many it is difficult to go beyond the immediate complacency of a beautiful homily, knowing that it is not enough to expand one’s notions to be good Christians. Many lack the willingness to...
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