Luke, Chapter 9, Verse 44-45
44 “Pay attention to what I am telling you. The Son of Man is to be handed over to men.” 45 But they did not understand this saying; its meaning was hidden from them so that they should not understand it, and they were afraid to ask him about this saying.
The apostles were so caught up with the glory of Christ and their own dreams of power that they dared not look at the truth. We often prefer to live in fantasy rather than face the present and actually see what is really going on. We like the apostles must “Pay Attention.” We must be mindful of others and support them where we can, we must check in with others, exercise forgiveness and engage in service to others and our (first to our families, charity begins at home-there should be no orphans in your family) community.
Amoris Lætitia Looking to Jesus: The Vocation of the Family-Jesus restores and fulfills God’s plan (61-65)
Contrary to those who rejected marriage as evil, the New Testament teaches that “everything created by God is good and nothing is to be rejected.” Marriage is “a gift” from the Lord. At the same time, precisely because of this positive understanding, the New Testament strongly emphasizes the need to safeguard God’s gift: “Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled.” This divine gift includes sexuality: “Do not refuse one another.”
God’s original plan for man and woman, reaffirmed the indissoluble union between them, even stating that ‘it was for your hardness of heart that Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so’ (Mt 19:8). The indissolubility of marriage – ‘what God has joined together, let no man put asunder’ (Mt 19:6) – should not be viewed as a ‘yoke’ imposed on humanity, but as a ‘gift’ granted to those who are joined in marriage… God’s indulgent love always accompanies our human journey; through grace, it heals and transforms hardened hearts, leading them back to the beginning through the way of the cross.
Through his Church, Christ bestows on marriage and the family the grace necessary to bear witness to the love of God and to live the life of communion. The Gospel of the family spans the history of the world, from the creation of man and woman in the image and likeness of God (cf. Gen 1:26-27), to the fulfillment of the mystery of the covenant in Christ at the end of time with the marriage of the Lamb (cf. Rev 19:9).”
He began his public ministry with the miracle at the wedding feast of Cana (cf. Jn 2:1-11). In this way he demonstrated the true meaning of mercy, which entails the restoration of the covenant (cf. John Paul II, Dives in Misericordia, 4). We need to enter into the mystery of Jesus’ birth, into that “yes” given by Mary to the message of the angel, when the Word was conceived in her womb. We need to contemplate the joy of the shepherds before the manger. We need to contemplate the religious expectation of Zechariah and his joy at the birth of John the Baptist. We then need to peer into those thirty long years when Jesus earned his keep by the work of his hands, reciting the traditional prayers and expressions of his people’s faith and coming to know that ancestral faith until he made it bear fruit in the mystery of the Kingdom. This is the mystery of Christmas and the secret of Nazareth, exuding the beauty of family life!
Feast of St. Wenceslaus
· Throughout his life he preserved his virginity unblemished.
· As duke he was a father to his subjects, generous toward orphans, widows, and the poor.
· On his own shoulders he frequently carried wood to the houses of the needy.
· He often attended the funerals of the poor, ransomed captives, and visited those suffering in prison.
· He was filled with a deep reverence toward the clergy; with his own hands he sowed the wheat for making altar breads and pressed the grapes for the wine used in the Mass.
· During winter he would visit the churches barefoot through snow and ice, frequently leaving behind bloody footprints.
Things to Do
· Learn more about Prague and the Czech Republic and St. Vitus Cathedral, supposedly started by St. Wenceslas in the 10th century as a small chapel to house relics of St. Vitus and where in the 14th century St. John Nepomucene was buried after being executed for refusing to violate the seal of the confessional.
· Teach your children the Christmas carol, Good King Wenceslas and discuss his life and virtue. If you can find a copy, a wonderful book with music and illustrations is called Good King Wenceslas: A Legend in Music and Pictures by Mary Reed Newland, published by Seabury Press, 1980.
· Read about the Infant Jesus of Prague and pray the chaplet.
· Bake a loaf of bread for dinner and serve wine in honor of St. Wencelaus.
Our mindset connects or disconnects us with others—there are a number of ways we can “see” others from an inward mindset. Traditionally, Arbinger has categorized these three ways of seeing others as obstacles, vehicles or simply irrelevant.
1. When I’m seeing someone as an obstacle, I see them as “in my way”, or as a hindrance to what I’m seeking to accomplish.
2. When I’m seeing someone as a vehicle, I use them to get me what I want, or where I need to go. They might have information or connections that are valuable to me, so I “play nice” until I get what I want.
3. When someone is irrelevant to me, I don’t care about them and likely don’t allow their humanity to impact me in any way.
All three of these labels are ultimately ways that I objectify others. When I’m seeing someone as an obstacle, vehicle or irrelevancy, I’m not seeing them as a human being with needs, concerns, hopes and fears similar to my own. Think of someone who you struggle to see as a person. Perhaps they get on your nerves frequently, or perhaps you avoid them at all costs. This person might be a coworker, a family member, a neighbor—someone with whom you feel your relationship could improve. How do you see this particular person? Are they often an obstacle? A vehicle? Mostly irrelevant? If the person you have in mind feels like an obstacle to you, consider how you might not be receiving their goodness or kindness. If this person feels more like a vehicle to you, contemplate what needs they might have that you’re failing to see? Are you looking to simply “get”, or are you willing to give? For someone you’re seeing as irrelevant, what must it feel like for him or her to feel ignored, barely noticed or hardly cared about? Have you ever been seen as an obstacle, a vehicle or irrelevant? How did it feel? Ponder what underlying qualities you might be missing in the person you’re thinking of. What might the people who love them see in them?
35 Promises of God cont.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.”-John 3:16
· Battle for the Soul of America-Day 45
 Pope Francis, Encyclical on Love.
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