Fourth Sunday after Easter
2 Samuel, Chapter 1, Verse 14
David said to him, “How is it that you were not afraid to put forth your hand to desecrate the LORD’s anointed?
The lesson here is, do not be a person who seeks to gain from another’s misfortune.
Cue up the Sad Violins
· As 2 Samuel begins, Saul and Jonathan have just died fighting the Philistines while David almost fought for the Philistines, but ended up getting excused at the last second, and headed off to fight the Amalekites.
· Saul had committed suicide after seeing his defeat was inevitable (with, as it turns out, a little help), and Jonathan was killed in the battle.
· A survivor from Saul's army finds David and tells him the news. It turns out the survivor was an Amalekite who (at Saul's request) helped Saul finish dying, giving him a fatal sword thrust, before bringing Saul's crown and armlet to David.
· However, David is offended that this guy had the guts to help kill the Lord's anointed, so he has one of his own men kill the Amalekite.
Singing the Blues
· Then, David sings the blues. In a song, he laments the deaths of Saul and Jonathan, singing, "How the mighty have fallen!"
· He hails them both, paying tribute to their strength and good qualities, and telling the rest of Israel to weep for them in mourning.
· He also says that Jonathan's love for him was "wonderful, passing the love of a woman," before repeating again, "How the mighty have fallen."
Honor God’s Anointed
It appears that the Amalekite was trying to get a reward for killing the enemy of David (Saul). Everyone in the nation knew that Saul and David were at odds and that Saul was trying to kill David. When he stumbled onto the body of Saul, he thought that he had hit the jackpot. Instead of telling the truth about what he found he lied to David with the hope of getting gain. David was faultless in killing him because the man told David that he had killed the Lords anointed. In David’s eye that was a serious crime and the man brought it on himself. Notice and verse 14 of second Samuel he says "How wast thou not afraid to stretch forth thine hand to destroy the Lords anointed?" and in verse 16, "And David said unto him, thy blood be on thy upon thy head; for thy mouth hath testified against thee, saying I have slain the Lords anointed." Even though he did not kill Saul he lied in hopes of being rewarded and he was, just not in the way he thought though. The wages of sin is death.
Fourth Sunday after Easter A description of the meekness and patience of Christ's flock and an explanation of the necessity of the Ascension.
THE Introit of the Mass of to-day is a song of praise and thanksgiving.
Sing ye to the Lord a new canticle, alleluia, for the Lord hath done wonderful things, alleluia. He hath revealed His justice in the sight of the gentiles, alleluia, alleluia. His right hand hath wrought for Him salvation, and His arm is holy.
Prayer. O God, Who dost unite the hearts of the faithful in one will, grant to Thy people to love what Thou commandest, and to desire what Thou dost promise, that among the changes of this world our hearts may be fixed on that place where true joys reside.
EPISTLE. James i. 17-21.
Dearly Beloved: Every best gift, and every perfect gift, is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with Whom there is no change, nor shadow of alteration. For of His own will hath He begotten us by the word of truth, that we might be some beginning of His creatures. You know, my dearest brethren. And let every man be swift to hear but slow to tspeak, and slow to anger. For the anger of man worketh not the justice of God. Wherefore casting away all uncleanness, and abundance of naughtiness, with meekness receive the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.
In this epistle the Church teaches us that every good gift comes from God. But the most precious gift is, that He of His grace through the doctrines and institutions of Christianity, has made us new men, children of God, and heirs of the kingdom of heaven. The Church admonishes us, further, to walk worthy of this grace; to love God as our Father, to listen to His word willingly, without complaining when He chastises us, and to shun all impurity, anger, and multiplicity of words, in which “there shall not want sin” (Prov. x. 19).
Aspiration. Help me, O God, to preserve the grace received in baptism; give me, therefore, a great love for Thy word. Deliver me from all inordinate passions, that I may walk worthy of Thee, purely and with patience.
GOSPEL. John xvi. 5-14.
At that time Jesus said to His disciples: I go to Him that sent Me; and none of you asketh Me: Whither goest Thou? But because I have spoken these things to you, sorrow hath filled your heart. But I tell you the truth: it is expedient to you that I go: for if I go not, the Paraclete will not come to you: but if I go, I will send Him to you. And when He is come, He will convince the world of sin, and of justice, and of judgment; of sin: because they believed not in Me. And of justice: because I go to the Father: and you shall see Me no longer. And of judgment: because the prince of this world is already judged. I have yet many things to say to you: but you cannot bear them now. But when He the Spirit of truth is come, He will teach you all truth; for He shall not speak of Himself; but what things soever He shall hear, He shall speak, and the things that are to come He shall show you. He shall glorify Me because He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it to you.
Why did Jesus say, “I go to My Father”? To reprove His disciples for giving way to excessive sorrow over His departure, which was to be the means of purifying and strengthening their virtue, and of perfecting the work of redemption, for them and for all the world. Learn from this, not to give way to too much sorrow in adversity.
How has the Holy Ghost convinced the world of sin, of justice, and of judgment? He has convinced the world,
1. of sin, by making the Jews know and lament the monstrous crime which they committed against Christ, and this He effected particularly at Pentecost.
2. Of justice, by teaching the innocence and holiness of Jesus, on account of which God gave Him a kingdom, and required men to worship Him as the true God.
3. Of judgment, by everywhere overcoming the prince of darkness, destroying his kingdom, casting down the temples of idolatry, and in their place, by seemingly weak means, establishing the kingdom of truth and virtue.
How does the Holy Ghost teach all truths? By preserving the pastors and teachers of the Church from all errors, in their teaching of faith and morals, and by instructing each, member of the Church in the truths of salvation.
Aspiration. Whither am I going? Will my life bring me to God? O my God and my Lord direct my feet in the way of Thy commandments, and keep my heart free from sin, that the Holy Ghost, finding nothing in me worthy of punishment, may teach me all truth, and bring me safely to Thee, Who art the eternal truth. Amen.
In honor of Mother’s Day, here are a few quotes from John Paul II’s apostolic letter On the Dignity of Women (Mulieris Dignitatem) about the unique vocation of motherhood.
John Paul II: “Motherhood involves a special communion with the mystery of life, as it develops in the mother’s womb. The mother is filled with wonder at this mystery of life, and ‘understands’ with unique intuition what is happening inside her. In the light of the ‘beginning’, the mother accepts and loves as a person the child she is carrying in her womb. This unique contact with the new human being developing within her gives rise to an attitude towards human beings – not only towards her own child, but every human being – which profoundly marks the woman’s personality.”
“Motherhood implies from the beginning a special openness to the new person: and this is precisely the woman’s ‘part’. In this openness, in conceiving and giving birth to a child, the woman ‘discovers herself through a sincere gift of self’.”
“Human parenthood is something shared by both the man and the woman. Even if the woman, out of love for her husband, says: ‘I have given you a child’, her words also mean: ‘This is our child’. Although both of them together are parents of their child, the woman’s motherhood constitutes a special ‘part’ in this shared parenthood, and the most demanding part. Parenthood – even though it belongs to both – is realized much more fully in the woman, especially in the prenatal period. It is the woman who ‘pays’ directly for this shared generation, which literally absorbs the energies of her body and soul. It is therefore necessary that the man be fully aware that in their shared program of parenthood he owes a special debt to the woman.”
John Paul II, Apostolic Letter Mulieris Dignitatem (1988), no. 18
Mother's Day Top Events and Things to Do
· Take mom out to brunch or dinner. Be sure to book in advance as Mother's Day brunches are always very busy.
· Clean the house for your mother or grandmother.
· Send mom and grandma flowers. You can either pick them up or deliver them yourself if you are nearby or use one of many online services that ship directly to her door.
· Give mom a gift she will really appreciate - a day at the spa or a weekend off.
· A simple phone call to mom will suffice. Let her know that you love her and think about her.
· Manhood of Christ Day 4, Tenth Week.
 Goffine’s Devout Instructions, 1896