Friday, June 26, 2015

Paul's Reflections 497 : 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year B

13th Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year B

Wisdom 1:13-15; 2:23-24
 God is the author of life, not death, and destruction is not of God's design.
Psalm 30:2, 4, 5-6, 11, 12, 13 The Lord turns mourning into dancing and weeping into rejoicing.
2 Corinthians 8:7, 9, 13-15 Jesus surrenders richness for poverty that we might become rich.
Mark 5:21-43 A man's dying daughter and a sick woman's distress call forth the power of Jesus.


Today's readings speak of the mystery of suffering and death in the lives of all people. It is made clear that God made us for life and for health and that whatever the meaning of the existence of suffering and death in this world, we must continue to trust that God only has our good in mind.


God does not desire that there be suffering, illness and pain in the world. God designed us for life, and life to the full and for health and strength.  God is present in our midst, offering comfort and strength and God is at work amongst us offering us healing (of one form or another) in times of illness, difficulty and pain.

God is at work constantly bringing about life from adversity and renewing his covenant with us.

We cannot fully explain why God does not remove all illness, suffering and pain from this world, except to be certain that God's compassion and love and care, revealed in Jesus, show where God can be found in the midst of this suffering.  For reasons that are not often clear to us with our limited human vision and perspective, this is the best of all possible worlds that God could have designed; though we do not know why God could not have made a world that did that excludes all misery, pain, suffering and death.  But we are invited to trust in God's goodness and that God only wants our good and not our ill.

We are invited to trust that God is always with us and that Jesus shows us God who is suffering along with all those who labour and are heavily burdened and how God is working to lift their burdens in this life and give them fullness of life in the next.
The faith and the trust of the two people in the Gospel this weekend, (namely Jairus and also the nameless women who touches Our Lord's garment as he passes by), fill us with hope too. Jesus' compassion towards them shows us God's deep and abiding compassion towards all people too. God cares deeply and eternally about all people, especially those suffering and in pain. God is eternally faithful to them and keeps them in God's care and love. God will never forget us or abandon us.

This gospel also tells us the difference between "incidental" actions and "purposeful" actions. We do many different things in any given day, some are unthinking and mechanical, some are well-thought out and purposeful.  The disciples were utterly astounded in the gospel this weekend when Jesus, surrounded by jostling crowds, stopped and asked "who touched me?"  The disciples rightly pointed out that a lot of people were touching him, because he was in the middle of a pushing crowd. Whatever did Jesus mean???   But Jesus could tell the difference between the ordinary incidental touching that occurred in a surging crowd and the faith-filled and deliberate action of a woman who trusted in God and in his ability to make a difference in her life.  That woman's actions were deliberate, purpose-filled and faith-filled and this is what Jesus commended.  Whatever we do in life, whenever we pray and think about what we should be doing and then set about purposefully doing what we believe is right and good and according to God's plans, then we too are commended and encouraged by our Lord in our faith-filled decisions and choices.
This weekend’s Gospel is wonderful. I love that part where the lady quietly touches Jesus clothes in the trust that Jesus had the power to save her. Jesus reaction is amazing. He IMMEDIATELY knew that power had gone out from him. He asks a question that stumps the disciples: "Who has touched my clothes?" But his disciples said to Jesus, "You see how the crowd is pressing upon you, and yet you ask, ';Who touched me?'" The reaction of the disciples is understandable: "What is he talking about, everyone is touching his clothes, there is a crowd pressing in on him from every side, but still he asks, ‘who touched me.’???

But Jesus knew exactly what he was asking. He KNEW that all manner of people were touching him, but he knew even more that only one person had touched him with the purposefulness and clarity of faith and trust in WHO he is and WHAT he could do, and the SIGNIFICANCE of his mission. Jesus stopped because he sensed that this wonderful lady who had suffered so long had dared to break cultural taboos and risk ignoring the rules of the religious law because she believed that Jesus had the power to save her. She was right and Jesus praised her for her faith.
We too trust and believe in Hope that Jesus has the power to save us, to heal us and to forgive us, and to give us the eternal life that he has promised us.

Fr Paul




To unsubscribe click here.

--
This was sent to you by Fr Paul Kelly. My apologies if you did not want to receive this.
---
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Catholic Reflections (Fr Paul Kelly archives)" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to paulkellyreflections+unsubscribe@googlegroups.com.
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Paul's Reflections 496 : Homily Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year B. 21st June, 2015

Homily Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year B.  21st June, 2015

Jesus Calms the storms of life. Jesus is God, whom even the Wind and the Waves obey.

“Jesus was asleep in the boat; how few souls there are that let him have his sleep out! He can't be always doing all the work, responding to all the calls made upon him; so for my own part I am content to leave him undisturbed. I dare say he won't make his presence felt till I start out on the great retreat of eternity; I don't complain of that, I want it to happen… our Lord doesn't supply me with provisions for my journey – he just gives me food unexpectedly when and as I need it. [St Thérèse (1873-1897)]

I have never had much luck with boats. One time, whilst on Lake Cootharaba, in a tin boat we were coming close to the pier and the captain yelled out, "quickly, jump out and moor the boat.' I had always been taught that the captain must be obeyed in all things, so I immediately leaped out of the boat. Sadly, the captain had meant, "when the boat gets close enough to the pier please jump out.' The boat was not near enough to the pier so I leapt out and disappeared into the lake, but not before hitting my chin. The whole thing could have been terribly disastrous (even fatal), so I was very much relieved to discover that my head must be made of concrete because I leapt up out of the water, which was thankfully only three feet deep at the pier, and emerged sheepish, but fairly well. Later, I was lying in the back of the boat, half dazed and injured, as they took me back to the other side of the lake, and I thought about how Jesus has lain in the back of a boat as it crossed another river. I was in such a dazed state, I began musing on ponderous topics…..  such as this…."I reckon Jesus would have been calm even if the storm had not quietened, and even if the boat had sunk. This is because Jesus was totally and utterly at one with his Heavenly Father and had surrendered his will and his trust totally in his Father's will. So, come what may in his life and ministry, he was content to be calm and rest in God's will."

For my part, I vowed to be very hesitant to leap into or out of a boat very soon!

Not many of us would be fast asleep in a small boat which was tossing around like a cork on a stormy sea! Jesus must have been extremely exhausted, needing rest, and fearless. We may think the disciples should have had strong faith after the miracles they had witnessed. When we are going through difficult times, we, too, often forget that Jesus is there with us.

God in Jesus calms even what seems like the most unconquerable disturbances, just like the storm at sea.  

What "storms" assail my faith? How do I look to Jesus to quiet my fears?  The disciples wonder, "Who then is this whom even wind and sea obey?" ; How can I go beyond the "signs" of faith and grasp who Jesus is in my daily life?

Life is a challenge. Couples sometimes struggle with their relationships. Parents have to deal with their children growing up in a world that is sometimes hostile to the values we hold sacred. Kids sometimes live with parents who don't necessarily understand the distant horizons that call to a new generation. Every life has its storms that come up and threaten to sink our boats. Doesn't God care that we feel tossed about and lost? Can we believe that Jesus is with us, in our boat, snoozing on a cushion? We are confident and trusting that he will awaken to our calls and calm the storms that frighten us so?

“Why therefore be disturbed? Your heart is agitated by the tribulations of the world, as the boat in which Jesus Christ was asleep.... This boat in which Jesus Christ is sleeping is your heart in which faith is slumbering. What news do you hear, O Christian, what news do you hear?” —AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO (354-430)

“When he established the Heavens, I was there, when he drew a circle on the face of the deep, when he made firm the skies above, when he established the fountains of the deep, when he assigned to the sea its limit, so that the waters might not transgress his command, when he marked out the foundations of the earth, then I was beside him.” —PROVERBS 8:27-30

 

 

+++

Extra

"We begin to reflect on who God is for each of us. What do we think of God? How have we experienced God in our lives? Like these early followers of Jesus, if we meet someone who can stop a storm, who can still the wind and the waves, we would surely be impressed and wonder about that person. Today we can imagine Jesus sleeping in this boat. It could not have been a very large boat and the storm would have been tossing it all over the place. And Jesus sleeps!

How many times have we experienced storms in our lives and thought that the Lord was asleep, that God was not concerned, that God was simply ignoring us? The Gospel today lets us know that God is always aware of what is happening in our lives, even when He seems asleep, unconcerned and uncaring. The Gospel invites us to a deep level of trust in our God. God loves us and cares for us always and will not let us perish. We don't always understand the ways of God—and that should never surprise us. God sees all and knows all and our vision and knowledge is so restricted!

The first reading today, from the Book of Job, is part of our learning about the divine also. Job finally realizes that God is God—and Job understands so little of all reality. We also must learn that lesson. We can easily think that we know what is best in any situation. So we don't pray and we don't even ask God to give us wisdom and understanding. We also need to repent, as Job does at the end of the Book of Job. We stand in the presence of the Almighty and think that we have more wisdom and knowledge than does the Almighty! Again, we can reflect on our personal image of God and of the power of God."

(excerpt from Abbot's Homily, Monastery of Christ in the Desert).

 

References:

 

* Fr Paul W. Kelly

* Abbot's Homily, Monastery of Christ in the Desert

* Some questions from Prepare the Word

 

++



To unsubscribe click here.

--
This was sent to you by Fr Paul Kelly. My apologies if you did not want to receive this.
---
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Catholic Reflections (Fr Paul Kelly archives)" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to paulkellyreflections+unsubscribe@googlegroups.com.
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Paul's Reflections 495 : Homily Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year B. 14th June, 2015

Homily Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year B.  14th June, 2015

It has been said by many commentators, and I agree, that Our Lord is surely the greatest storyteller ever known. We have no extant copies of anything he wrote, but fortunately we have the Gospels and New Testament letters as records of many of his teachings, sayings and (best of all) parables…. The most brilliant and important short stories ever told!


Studying the parables of Christ, it is clear how transforming and astounding his insights are into the reality of the Kingdom of God, and also, how different God’s thinking and God’s values are from many of our human and earthly ways. Also, the parables of Our Lord make it clear that Jesus has a perfect grasp of the complicated meaning and significance of the Kingdom, and a determination to show us that meaning in a way that would make sense to our fledgling grasp on it.

 

Any time we are tempted to think we completely comprehend the parables and any time we feel comfortable and familiar with the parables of Jesus, then we should be wary that we have not simply watered-down their meaning. Jesus did not come to bring us a comfy, cosy mindset, but rather to turn upside down the thinking of human kingdoms, so as to put us into the mindset of God.

 

As Christians who are constantly striving to put on the mind of Christ ever more deeply, we should stay close to the parables of Christ. We should be ever-vigilant and wary of our human tendency to water things down and stretch God’s ways to suit our own, whilst still claiming to be loyal to God’s ways. Jesus continued to challenge the religious people of his time and point out the ways that they claimed to be faithful to God’s views whilst hypocritically not living God’s values. It is not just the religious people of Jesus’ day who are prone to do this. It is ALL of us who are prone to do this and hence the wariness and vigilance which we must maintain, even against our own personal thoughts and motives and actions.

 

This weekend’s parable is delightful, as always, and it both reassures and unsettles in equal measure.

The parable of the seed reminds us that, like the humble mustard seed, the Word of God is growing even without our human effort, and sometimes in spite of human intervention.  God’s word WILL produce its fruit with or without our help, but if we help spread and live the Word, it will be all the much better.  

Secondly, this image of the mustard seed and the mustard bush helps reassure us that the patchy results and responses to God’s word should not put us off, but spur us on to continuing this good work.  The response to God’s word will not be necessarily even or fully successful in all zones, but it will produce fruit and it will take hold, never doubt that.  

 

But, now for the unsettling element…..  The Bible is full of the image of powerful Cedar Trees of Lebanon as a symbol of God’s majestic power and influence. The Cedar of Lebanon is one of the most powerful images of Israel for people at the time of Christ, and here is Jesus giving his familiar audience a parable comparing the Kingdom of God to a scrawny mustard bush.   That must have blown the minds of the listeners.  Whilst the majestic, towering, dominant, prestigious and priveleged image of the Cedar is good,  Jesus is saying the Kingdom will be more like the patchy, humble, sporadic and inclusive image of a bush that does not tower over everything else, but gently and humbly shelters all comers under its low branches.   Jesus invites us to get our minds and hearts around a Kingdom, and therefore a church, which is more inclusive, more down to earth, less privileged, less distant, and which accepts that whilst its influence and presence might not be covering all areas, it will take root all over the place and give support and shade to many.   

This is an exciting, and more humble vision for the Kingdom, and it is well worth deeply reflecting upon.  

 

+++++

References:

Fr Paul W. Kelly

Also

Break open the word, commentary.



To unsubscribe click here.

--
This was sent to you by Fr Paul Kelly. My apologies if you did not want to receive this.
---
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Catholic Reflections (Fr Paul Kelly archives)" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to paulkellyreflections+unsubscribe@googlegroups.com.
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Paul's Reflections 494 : HOMILY. The Body and Blood of Christ

THE BODY AND BLOOD OF THE LORD – YEAR B

There is a saying:  "You are what you eat."

In the Eucharist, we believe that "we become what we receive…"    In Eucharist…we receive the body and blood of Jesus Christ….. and in so doing….we trust in // and engage directly // with the grace of God that it contains ……   that it might transform us to become more and more like Jesus with every passing day………..in our values, in our union with Jesus …..  in our being……….     this is what we are celebrating today, and each time we receive holy communion…….

Our communion with God and with one-another and with the wider universal church is all interconnected…….  .   It is all communion in and through Christ.

A priest I worked with in Beenleigh Parish, (Fr Dan Grundy, in fact, who is known well to many here)…..   He said once…  weekly Eucharist as like the piers or vertical supports on a BRIDGE…..  With the bridge length being our weekly lives….   We need that regular support to keep the whole thing standing…  as we travel along on our journey….   We need regular supports along the whole length of our journey or it (in a sense) can all cave in….

You probably get a bit dismayed too as I know I do when one hears the saying…   "I am not going to make my child go to church, or I am not going to baptise my child. ...instead I am going to let them decide whether they want to go to church or be baptised when they are old enough to decide for themselves…"  with respect…   that doesn't work…..  how can one choose what they don't know… how can one reject what one is largely unaware of….. 
and it contradicts the many other ways, parents are TEACHING their children what is valuable and right and good and worth doing, by simply insisting that they practice those valuable things…  I like to use the analogy of teeth…..   a parent wouldn't dream of saying…  I am not going to insist that my child brushes their teeth daily… and after each meal…  I will let them decide for themselves when they are old enough….   My goodness, they will probably not have a tooth in their head…  well of course no one does that… that would be ludicrous… well as far as we are concerned…  not insisting that one's child attends mass regularly and learns of their faith and experiences it would be just as ludicrous and just as disastrous….

The worst trends that ever happened in the life of the modern church is that person or persons and all who repeated it… who said  …  (and it became a catchphrase on the lips of so very many….)  you don't need to go to church to be a good Christian…..   that glib simplification….  That cliché is responsible for untold damage…. And it is so very wrong and unhelpful….  So undermining of the community…….    Who knows what they have unwittingly done with such un-reflected-upon, kneejerk catchphrases. …….   Again… another priest I knew would argue to the end of time….  One might very well be a good person even if they don't go to mass, but you simply cannot be a good Christian if you don't.  (or if truly unable to come to mass, at least reading the Scriptures of the day, and receiving communion if possible and reading and reflecting upon a breaking open of the word by a homilist….…..)..church is simply not an optional extra in the life of the Christian…  as everyone here knows…. //    We are receiving Christ himself in his word and in his body and blood…. We are opening up weekly the meaning and implication of the scriptures and ensuring that it is not just our convenient and comfy version of Jesus' unsettling and challenging word that spurs us on to action week after week…. 

(and I think of those many people who are too sick or frail to come to church and who long to be here with us… who know so very deeply how precious and beautiful this gift of Eucharist is… that they long to be with us but are too ill to do so…..  they too of course are in communion with us through communion that is brought to them and the prayers and best wishes of the whole community for them and with them here and at their home…..     and those who long to be here but are unable to must be so mind-boggled along with us, by those who could come and don't …. Who don't fully comprehend the rare and precious gift we are offered and which we need to keep on the right track…

I often say before to the different First Holy Communion classes as they make this special sacrament for the first time… that "I truly believe.. as exciting as first holy communion is… there is only one thing better than one's first holy communion… and that is one's second holy communion….. and there is only one thing better than second holy communion and that is third…. and so on…and so on…..…   it sets up a pattern of communion with the body and blood of Christ in our daily life……

I also think it is particularly beautiful…..  we believe in the God of the incarnation…. God made flesh…….  and so, God, who was made flesh and dwelt among us, understands intimately that we human beings are both spirit AND flesh… and as such…. we need tangible….touchable…..   sacraments so that we may engage with the realities of God's love and Jesus' presence …not only intellectually….but also physically……    and materially…….    God gives us sacraments so that we can not only think about God's care for us, God's healing, forgiving and uniting plan for us… but we can actually engage with it… and feel it and touch it…. and taste it…..

Our communion in the Body and Blood of Christ connects us forever to God… and to our loved ones…..   every time we celebrate Eucharist and every time we receive the body and blood of Christ, we are united, in communion and connected by an unbreakable bond to God, first and foremost… (through Jesus)  but also we are connected to our loved ones.. and friends.. and fellow Christians…..   and we are even connected to our departed loved ones who are all part of the communion of believers….   Alive in Christ…  forever…

This gift of the Eucharist is a gift of inexplicable value……

and we celebrate today… Jesus Christ, who comes to us and makes his home in us, through the sacrament of his body and blood….

Fr Paul W. KELLY

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Paul's Reflections 493 : Homily 31st May, 2015 - The Most Holy Trinity Sunday. Year B

Homily 31st May, 2015  -  The Most Holy Trinity Sunday. Year B.    

I think this quote from the great English writer C.S. Lewis says so much about the Trinity:

“Three persons, one God of love -
People seem not to notice that the words 'God is love' have no real meaning unless God contains at least two persons. Love is something that one person has for another person. If God was a single person, then before the world was made, He was not love…Christians believe that the living, dynamic activity of love has been going on in God forever and has created everything else… in Christianity God is not a static thing – but  (rather a personal) dynamic, pulsating activity, a life, almost a kind of drama… Almost, a kind of dance.” [C.S. Lewis (1898-1963)]

I love the Trinity, it is an indispensible part of the Christian faith. It is certainly not (as some people are occasionally heard to say) merely an academic construct, but rather, the Holy Trinity is an absolute necessity to get a small grasp and glimpse into the breadth, depth and diversity of God's inner nature; which is implicitly community, and innately relational and loving.

My favourite image of the Trinity, is the very famous icon by Andre Rublev, from the 15th Century. You have most likely seen it….  It is a picture of three Angelic figures sitting at a table sharing a meal under the Oak of Mamre. It literally depicts the visit of the three angelic persons representing God, who visited Abraham and stayed to share a meal provided by Abraham and Sarah’ reverent hospitality.


Firstly, all persons of the Trinity in this picture are portrayed as humans, not just two people and a dove. Although the dove is an ancient symbol for the Holy Spirit and quite valid, it can sometimes not capture the fact that we believe in three persons equal in sharing the one divine nature.

I also love this icon of the Trinity because it captures the perfect inter-relation that exists within God who is three persons. It is as if each is deferring to one another and giving each other precedence and respect; and in return they give it right back. It is perfect harmony, perfect giving and perfect receiving, as if one is pointing to the food at the table and saying to the other, please, be my guest, you first, and the other is saying, thank you, i appreciate it, now, please take some yourself, thank you, you are kind.... and on it goes..... But in a more serious aspect, the community and nature of God is perfect hospitality, perfect relationship and absolute respect and reverence. It is this wonderful life that Jesus invites us into……..  We are invited to share in this perfect harmony of the Trinity, and if we accept…. it will transform us and the world around us. We are invited into the very inner life of God. 

As the first reading tells us, we are, moved by the Spirit we have been given, to be sons and daughters of God, and heirs of God…   but as a way of keeping us humble..  we are heirs to Christ’s sufferings, - for God suffers in this self-sacrificing, and generous love.. that gives without counting the cost.  And in the gospel, one of my all-time favourite Gospel passages ever…   Jesus promises us that he will be with us always, even till the end of time…..    But again..  we are reminded, that by becoming God’s people, by becoming sons and daughters of God, and heirs to the Kingdom… comes with it this task..   to live with an outreaching love towards others and to the world, as God, the trinity lives…   we are told we must go out …  out into all the world….  

The cost of entry into this eternal relationship with God is to always remain outward looking, turned out towards others..  willing to suffer for participating in the outreaching, generous and unselfish love of God…..   At the table of the Holy Trinity, there is no room here for any self-interest, stinginess and or inward-looking mentalities. God is always on the lookout for more people to be part of the family…  always reaching out….   Open and generous….. 
The more we as individuals, and we as Christian communities reflect the inner life of the Trinity, the more we are participating in that Trinitarian life.

It is no wonder that Our Lord, Jesus, is made really present to us, in the Eucharist, encountered in the form of a sacred meal and it is very poignant that Jesus was put to death because of, among other reasons, the people he ate with. God is love, and God is relational. It is great to share a meal and encounter a glimpse of what God (a Trinity of Persons), shares all the time.


To unsubscribe click here.
--
This was sent to you by Fr Paul Kelly. My apologies if you did not want to receive this.
---
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Catholic Reflections (Fr Paul Kelly archives)" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to paulkellyreflections+unsubscribe@googlegroups.com.
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Paul's Reflections 492 :

Homily 24th May, 2015  -  Pentecost Sunday. Year B 



Today’s feast day of Pentecost is, in many ways, a birthday celebration.  With the coming of the Holy Spirit upon the disciples, on that first Pentecost Sunday, Christ’s church was born.  And, as the readings this weekend tell us, we become beloved sons and daughters of God, and heirs to God’s kingdom. We have been given the freedom of the children of God.  But the second reading supplies an essential ‘qualifier’ (lest we get too proud and indulgent), that this freedom is given to us in order that we too can live as Christ did. So we are reminded that Pentecost, and our membership of God’s family is never meant to be self-serving or indulgent, but all about service, sacrifice and self-forgetting love.

If you are guided by the Spirit you will be in no danger of yielding to self-indulgence, since self-indulgence is the opposite of the Spirit, the Spirit is totally against such a thing, and it is precisely because the two are so opposed that you do not always carry out your good intentions. If you are led by the Spirit, no law can touch you. When self-indulgence is at work the results are obvious…………//  … What the Spirit brings is very different: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, trustfulness, gentleness and self-control. There can be no law against things like that, of course. You cannot belong to Christ Jesus unless you crucify all self-indulgent passions and desires. Since the Spirit is our life, let us be directed by the Spirit.

The Gospel this weekend also reminds us that the presence and action of the Holy Spirit in our lives and in the lives of the church, will always work to remind us of all that Christ did and said, and keep us close to Christ and his values. The Holy Spirit is the “Spirit of Truth." All who live by the Spirit, strive to live authentic, honest, integrated lives built on truth

The Gospel today, from Saint John, tells us that Jesus gives his followers the peace they need, because that is the first greeting of the Lord to them:  Peace be with you!  May we (too) know the peace of Jesus in our own lives!  With peace comes the capacity to forgive the sins of others.  This forgiveness is clearly a gift of the Lord who loves us.  This gift is given to each of us individually and also to the Church, through its ministry.

At the heart of our Christian life, fear is taken away, peace and forgiveness are given.  May we dispel the fears of others and proclaim the peace and forgiveness given to us in Jesus.
In the first reading too…   the disciples were not yet able to go out and speak publicly and to proclaim Jesus to others… even though they now knew he was Risen and Ascended to the Heavenly Father.  They had to wait for the Holy Spirit to take hold of them and give them courage in the face of doubt, persecution, ridicule and rejection.  Perhaps at times we too may be shy about proclaiming our faith in the Lord Jesus.  Perhaps today we can pray for this Spirit to come on us and to give us courage so that our faith becomes so much a part of ourselves that it is so natural and easy to speak of our faith, in an unforced manner.

Our gifts are different, each person having different gifts.  We need all the gifts that each person has so that we can continue the work of Christ in our world.  How different our world looks when we begin to recognize that each person brings his or her own gifts and that we need everyone’s gifts to live in the fullness of Jesus Christ.

In the ‘everyday’ and unexceptional, that is also where we encounter and KNOW the Spirit is at work in our lives; especially when the love and sacrifice we show is clearly coming from a loving hand bigger than our own lives and our own limited motives and actions

When we do actions that are loving and unselfish, we are deeply aware that there is a power and a loving presence at work in us that is outside of just ourselves.  ….Transcending our limitations … and not explainable by our own actions… but bigger, ……. And “of which are just a cooperating part….”

It is God, …. It is God’s Spirit at work in and through us.  At work in the world.   A power of unselfish, sacrificing love and service. Unconditional love. That is at the heart of creation.

Finally…  just an interesting insight that I hadn’t thought of before…  we often read this text about how (after the Spirit descended) people of different languages and cultures could all hear and understand….. but what is interesting is…   the people were not speaking the same language… they were still speaking in the language of those different cultures…..  but even so… they could understand….  This is a reminder that the Spirit brings not uniformity, but diversity and variety…. But we are all one in that diversity, because the common language we speak is the language of God… and that is LOVE…..

 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

REFERENCES:

 ·       FR. PAUL W. KELLY

·       MISSION 2000  – PRAYING SCRIPTURE IN A CONTEMPORARY WAY. YEAR B. BY MARK LINK S.J.

·       SHARING THE WORD THROUGH THE LITURGICAL YEAR. GUSTAVO GUTIERREZ.

·       MONASTERY OF CHRIST IN THE DESERT. ABBOT’S HOMILY.

++++++





To unsubscribe click here.

--
This was sent to you by Fr Paul Kelly. My apologies if you did not want to receive this.
---
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Catholic Reflections (Fr Paul Kelly archives)" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to paulkellyreflections+unsubscribe@googlegroups.com.
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Paul's Reflections 491 : Fr Paul's Reflections.  Ascension -

Fr Paul's Reflections.  Ascension -

The Ascension marks the completion of Jesus' earthly and bodily presence on earth…..   Jesus had to return to the Heavenly Father, because his rightful place was with the Father in Heaven, ruling heaven and earth from his place in Heaven…..  He needed to return to his Father so that he could send the Holy Spirit to make his work continue in and through his disciples…..

Our Catholic faith is big upon seeing beyond appearances….. to see deeper into things than just the surface….. it is a recurring theme throughout our faith and worship….

Jesus tells us, that God judges not by appearances but sees straight into the heart, into the inner dispositions and attitudes of the human person, and knows the truth of each one of us…..  Jesus encouraged us to ensure that our lives, our attitudes, our values and our actions flowed from a deep inner life connected with God and built upon love…….  mere outward appearances don't mean a lot in the gospel's scheme of things.  This is a valuable lesson for us, and for the world….in a time and culture where appearances seem to be taken on more of a value than they should…..    sometimes at the cost of inner value…

Jesus returned to the Father, and disappeared from our sight, so that we would look for and find the continuing real presence of Jesus, in different forms… that are not so obvious……  If Jesus still walked the earth the same way he did while he was with his disciples, there would be no need for us to look for him elsewhere. But Jesus' mission is to be "ALL IN ALL"…. to be draw all things to himself and to to bring to life God's Kingdom in and through all of creation……  this requires Christ to transform and fill up with his presence … all people and all the world…….. He achieves this with the Holy Spirit, and with the cooperation of his followers who continue his mission.

Jesus Christ is not visible in the same way as he was when he walked the earth with his disciples…..  but we believe Jesus is still present and active amongst us in new ways…. and through the power of the Holy Spirit….(which reminds us of all Jesus did and said and makes effective all that we do in Jesus' name). So, we all would become the hands and feet and heart of Jesus in our daily lives……

St. Teresa of Avila composed a prayer poem which the confirmation and communion students have been learning about.  

As St Teresa writes….

Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,

Yours are the eyes with which he looks
Compassion on this world,

Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good,

Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world.

Yours are the hands, yours are the feet,
Yours are the eyes, you are his body.
….

Christ has no body now on earth but yours.

And we become the body of Christ, by taking in the body of Christ in communion. We receive Our Lord as food and drink, and take in his presence, his grace and his values…. becoming, (with God's grace) more and more like Jesus with every day)…….   

The outward appearance of the bread and wine does not change….but its inner reality does….into Christ's presence….  we look and seem the same, but inside, we believe Jesus has made a home in our hearts… and hopefully our actions and attitudes show that living presence within us…


+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

REFERENCES: FR. PAUL W. KELLY




--~--~---------~--~----~------------~-------~--~----

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Paul's Reflections 24th May, 2009 Ascension - B

Ascension - B.  24th May, 2009 .

 

The Ascension marks the completion of Jesus' earthly and bodily presence on earth…..   Jesus had to return to the Heavenly Father, because his rightful place was with the Father in Heaven, ruling heaven and earth from his place in Heaven…..  He needed to return to his Father so that he could send the Holy Spirit to make his work continue in and through his disciples….. 

 

Our Catholic faith is big upon seeing beyond appearances….. to see deeper into things than just the surface….. it's a recurring theme throughout our faith and worship….

 

Jesus tells us, that God judges not by appearances but sees straight into the heart, into the inner dispositions and attitudes of the human person, and knows the truth of each one of us…..  Jesus encouraged us to ensure that our lives, our attitudes, our values and our actions flowed from a deep inner life connected with God and built upon love…….  mere outward appearances don't mean a lot in the gospel's scheme of things.  This is a valuable lesson for us, and for the world….in a time and culture where appearances seem to be taken on more of a value than they should…..    sometimes at the cost of inner value…

 

Jesus returned to the Father, and disappeared from our sight, so that we would look for and find the continuing real presence of Jesus, in different forms… that are not so obvious……  If Jesus still walked the earth the same way he did while he was with his disciples, there would be no need for us to look for him elsewhere. But Jesus' mission is to be "ALL IN ALL"…. to be draw all things to himself and to to bring to life God's Kingdom in and through all of creation……  this requires Christ to transform and fill up with his presence … all people and all the world…….. He achieves this with the Holy Spirit, and with the cooperation of his followers who continue his mission.

 

Jesus Christ is not visible in the same way as he was when he walked the earth with his disciples…..  but we believe Jesus is still present and active amongst us in new ways…. and through the power of the Holy Spirit….(which reminds us of all Jesus did and said and makes effective all that we do in Jesus' name). So, we all would become the hands and feet and heart of Jesus in our daily lives…… 

 

St. Teresa of Avila composed a prayer poem which the confirmation and communion students have been learning about.   

As St Teresa writes….


Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,

Yours are the eyes with which he looks
Compassion on this world,

Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good,

Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world.

Yours are the hands, yours are the feet,
Yours are the eyes, you are his body.

….

Christ has no body now on earth but yours.

 

 

And we become the body of Christ, by taking in the body of Christ in communion. We receive Our Lord as food and drink, and take in his presence, his grace and his values…. becoming, (with God's grace) more and more like Jesus with every day)…….    

 

The outward appearance of the bread and wine does not change….but its inner reality does….into Christ's presence….  we look and seem the same, but inside, we believe Jesus has made a home in our hearts… and hopefully our actions and attitudes show that living presence within us…

 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

REFERENCES: FR. PAUL W. KELLY

 


--~--~---------~--~----~------------~-------~--~----~
please reply emails to 

holyjoe@ozemail.com.au 

This was sent to you by Fr Paul Kelly from St Mary's Catholic Parish, Maryborough, QLD. My apologies if you did not want to recieve this, please contact me and I will delete the email if you do not want to continue receiving news. Back copies of previous logs can be found by visiting the parish website. www.marycatholic.com 

and also please visit my photo pages by clicking this link: 

www.mysteriousthree.com 

or the direct link by pasting the following into your web browser

http://good-times.webshots.com/album/554239563oXJIdn 

(some of the recent photos appear at the start of the page of photos, other new ones may be right at the last page)
-~----------~----~----~----~------~----~------~--~---