How can this man give us his flesh to eat?

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20th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B: August 16, 2015
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Recibir el amor de tal don

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XX Domingo Ordinario, Año B: 19 Agosto 2012
Pr 9, 1-6; Sal 33; Ef 5, 15-20; Jn 6, 51-58

Hace un siglo, el escritor Ernest Thompson Seton publicó un libro que incluyó una historia que vino de hace unas décadas. En la zona del Ártico, en un invierno, un grupo de indios algonquinos murieron de hambre—todos, menos una mujer y su bebé. Llevando a su bebé, ella empezó a caminar hacia un lugar donde podrían recibir ayuda. Llegaron en un lago, y allí encontró equipo, incluyendo un sedal; y hubo peces en el lago; pero no tuvo cebo. Y estaban muriendo de hambre. Por lo tanto, usando un cuchillo, la mujer cortó de su propio muslo una tira de carne, y puso su propia carne como cebo en el anzuelo, para coger el primer pescado. Y así ellos sobrevivieron—y siempre después la mujer tuvo una cicatriz en su muslo de donde había sacado su propia carne. (more…)

“My flesh for the life of the world”

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20th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B: Aug. 19, 2012
Prov 9:1-6; Ps 34; Eph 5:15-20; John 6:51-58

100 years ago, the author Ernest Thompson Seton published a book that included a story from a few decades earlier. Up in the Arctic, one winter a group of Algonquin Indians all starved to death—except for one woman and her baby. She took her baby and set out to reach a place where they could find help. They made it as far as a lake, where she found some equipment, including a fishing line; and there were fish in the lake; but no bait. They were starving. So the woman took a knife and cut a strip of flesh from her own thigh, and used her own flesh to bait that hook and catch the first fish. And they survived—and ever after the woman always had a scar on her thigh from where she had cut out her own flesh.

This is a striking story. And don’t we instantly understand just how great a love that woman had for her baby? And how remarkable it would be to give your own flesh to feed someone you love? Or to be the recipient of that kind of love? (more…)

The world, the flesh, and the freedom of the easy yoke of Christ

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14th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A: July 2-3, 2011
Zech 9:9-10; Ps 145; Rom 8:9, 11-13; Matt 11:25-30

The desires we feel in our bodies are not always good for our bodies. The desires that we feel in our flesh are not always good for our flesh.

We know that this is true from our own experience, if we think of our hunger for food. Our bodies need food to grow and to survive. But the problem is that sometimes we want to eat things that are not good for us. Or maybe we want food that is good for us, but we want too much of it; or too little of it; or we want it at the wrong times.

We know this. There is an entire weight-loss, dieting industry that is built upon the fact that the desires of our flesh will sometimes lead us in ways that are not good, not healthy, for the flesh itself. (more…)