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March 27, 2008
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June 29: Feast of Saints Peter and Paul
"Peter and Paul represent two strikingly different approaches to discipleship. Peter had to learn slowly, make many mistakes along the way, but always experienced the compassionate forgiveness and encouragement of Jesus . Paul, on the other hand, came to the Faith immediately and never backed away from his zeal for Christ."  [Ss. Peter & Paul The Apostles]

June 30: Feast of the First Holy Martyrs
"All we know is that the infants were slaughtered within two years following the apparition of the star to the Wise Men (Belser, in the Tubingen "Quartalschrift", 1890, p. 361). The Church venerates these children as martyrs (flores martyrum); they are the first buds of the Church killed by the frost of persecution; they died not only for Christ, but in his stead (St. Aug., "Sermo 10us de sanctis")."  [New Advent]

July 1: Feast of Blessed Junípero Serra
"Junípero Serra is known and appreciated as the builder of the California missions. On a purely human level, this accomplishment would make him a significant figure in history. But behind the work lies the spiritual sources that animated the heart of Blessed Junípero. He had a great heart for God. His dream was to establish missions from Baja, California all the way to Alaska. This evangelical zeal was the fruit of his abiding in the Church’s tradition—particularly in the tradition of Spanish Catholicism, in the tradition of the Franciscan order, and in the tradition of the grace of Our Lady of Guadalupe." [Catholic.net]

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FOXES HAVE DENS AND BIRDS OF THE SKY HAVE NESTS, BUT THE SON OF MAN HAS NOWHERE TO REST HIS HEAD.

The Lord wished to show his total openness to his Heavenly Father, whose will he was determined to carry out without letting himself be hindered by the possession of worldly goods: for there is always a danger that earthly realities will take the place of God in the human heart.

The Gospel for Sunday, July 1, 2007
Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Luke: 9:51-62

…forty years spent by Israel in the desert while on its way to the promised land. During that time the people experienced what it meant to live in tents, without a fixed abode, totally lacking security. How often they were tempted to return to Egypt, where at least there was a supply of bread even though it was the food of slaves. In the insecurity of the desert God himself provided water and food for his people, protecting them from every danger. For the Hebrews the experience of being total dependent on God thus became the path to freedom from slavery and the idolatry of material things.

…many passages in the Bible highlight the duty to help the homeless. In the Old Testament, the Torah teaches that strangers and the homeless in general, inasmuch as they are exposed to all sorts of dangers, deserve special concern from the believer. Indeed, God clearly and repeatedly recommends hospitality and generosity towards the stranger (cf. Dt 24:17-18, 10:18-19; Num 15:15; etc.), reminding Israel of how precarious its own existence had once been. Later, Jesus identified himself with the homeless: "I was a stranger and you welcomed me" (Mt 25:35), and taught that charity towards those in this situation will be rewarded in heaven. The Lord's Apostles urge the various communities which they had founded to show hospitality to one another, as a sign of communion and the newness of their life in Christ.

It is from God's own love that Christians learn to help the needy and to share with them their own material and spiritual goods. Such concern not only provides those experiencing hardship with material help but also represents an opportunity for the spiritual growth of the giver, who finds in it an incentive to detachment from worldly goods. But there is a higher motivation which Christ indicated to us by his own example when he said: "The Son of man has no where to lay his head" (Mt 8:20). By these words the Lord wished to show his total openness to his Heavenly Father, whose will he was determined to carry out without letting himself be hindered by the possession of worldly goods: for there is always a danger that earthly realities will take the place of God in the human heart…

…The Gospel call to be close to Christ who is "homeless" is an invitation to all the baptized to examine their own lives and to treat their brothers and sisters with practical solidarity by sharing their hardships. By openness and generosity, as a community and as individuals, Christians can serve Christ present in the poor, and bear witness to the Father's love. In this journey Christ goes before us. His presence is a source of strength and encouragement: he sets us free and makes us witnesses of Love… 

June 25, 2007

Excerpted from Pope John Paul II’s 1997 Lenten Message.


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READER COMMENTS
06.20.04   Godspy says:
The Lord wished to show his total openness to his Heavenly Father, whose will he was determined to carry out without letting himself be hindered by the possession of worldly goods: for there is always a danger that earthly realities will take the place of God in the human heart.

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