18TH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST (27th S. in Ord. Time)
This Sunday focuses the final manifestation of Christ and on sacrifice, forgiveness, and "confirmation in the end without crime" (1 Cor. 4.8)
Psalm 115, Verse 11-13
11 Those who fear the LORD trust in the LORD, who is their help and shield. 12 The LORD remembers us and will bless us, will bless the house of Israel, will bless the house of Aaron, 13 Will bless those who fear the LORD, small and great alike.
Psalm 115 is a response to the enemy taunt, “Where is your God?” This hymn to the glory of Israel’s God ridicules the lifeless idols of the nations, expresses in a litany the trust of the various classes of the people in God, invokes God’s blessing on them as they invoke the divine name, and concludes as it began with praise of God.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
A Visit from Moses
Hebrews 11:24-25 “By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin.”
Moses chose to go out with his own people, rather than remain in the nation where he was born. That’s because “He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward. By faith he left Egypt, not being afraid of the anger of the king, for he endured as seeing him who is invisible” (Heb 11:26-27). It was a display of faith when Moses “kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them” (Heb 11:28). That’s testimony against instant gratification and seeking eternal or permanent joy by being with God (Rev 21:3; 22:4).
"Jesus, seeing (the) faith (of those who brought the paralytic) said. . .'Take courage, son; thy sins are forgiven thee'" (Gospel). We approach the end of the Church's year. We, too, have grown to maturity. In our youth we regarded perfection an easy accomplishment. Now we plead for Redemption. We implore Hi Mercy to direct our hearts (Prayer) in the evening of our life (Offertory). Our plea today is: Give peace, O Lord. What is the condition for peace with neighbor, peace amongst nations? It is a call to set ourselves right with God! Are we ambassadors of peace to others? The paralytic was unable to do anything for himself. Did not Jesus cure him, absolve him, only when his friends brought him and He saw their faith?
What is an indulgence? It is the remission granted by the Church, in the name of God, and on account of the merits of Jesus Christ and of all the saints, of the temporal punishment which men must suffer, either in this world or in the world to come, for sins that have been already forgiven.
Whence do we know that after sins are forgiven there yet remains a temporal punishment? From Holy Scripture; thus God imposed upon Adam and Eve great temporal punishments, although He forgave them their sin (Gen. iii.). Moses and Aaron were punished for a slight want of confidence in God (Num. xx. 24; Deut. xxxii. 51). David, though forgiven, was obliged to submit to great temporal punishments (n. Kings xii.). Finally, faith teaches us that after death we must suffer in purgatory till we have paid the last farthing (Matt. v. 26).
Can the Church remit all temporal punishments, even those imposed by God Himself, and why? Certainly, by virtue of the power to bind and to loose which Christ has given her (Matt, xviii. 18). For if the Church has received from God the power to remit sins which is the greater she certainly has authority to remit the punishment of them which is the less. Moreover, it is by the bands of punishment that we are hindered from reaching the kingdom of God.
But if the Church can loose all bands, why not this? Finally, Jesus certainly had power to remit the temporal punishment of sins and the power which He Himself had He gave to His disciples.
What is required in order rightly to gain an indulgence? In order to gain an indulgence it is necessary: I. To be In the grace of God. It is proper, therefore, to go to confession every time that one begins the good works enjoined for the gaining of an indulgence. In granting partial indulgences sacramental confession is not usually prescribed, but if one who is in the state of mortal sin wishes to gain the indulgence, he must at least make an act of true contrition with a firm purpose of going to confession. 2. It is necessary to have at least a general intention of gaining the indulgences. 3. It is necessary to perform in person and with devotion all the good works enjoined as to time, manner, end, etc., according to the terms in which the indulgence is granted. To gain plenary indulgences, confession, communion, a visit to some church or public oratory, and pious prayers are usually prescribed. If visits to a church are prescribed, Holy Communion may be received in any church, but the indulgenced prayers must be said in that church in which the indulgence is granted, and on the prescribed day. As to prayers, it is recommended that there be said seven times the Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father, and Creed.
Prayerfor gaining an Indulgence
“We beseech Thee, O Lord, graciously accept the petitions of Thy holy Church, that Thou wouldst deliver her from all adversities, root out from her all heresies, unite all Christian rulers and princes, and exalt Thy holy Church on earth, that we may all serve Thee in peace and quietness. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
· Total Consecration Day 28
Goffine’s Devout Instructions, 1896