Las tribulaciones de esta vida, en la cronología de la Resurrección

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V Domingo de Pascua, Año C: 28 Abril 2013
Hch 14, 21-27; Sal 144; Ap 21, 1-5; Jn 13, 31-35

Hace cuatro semanas, en el domingo de Pascua, celebramos la resurrección de nuestro Señor Jesucristo de entre los muertos. Porque, después de su pasión y crucifixión y muerte y sepultura, al tercer día resucitó de entre los muertos, gloriosamente vivo, su cuerpo transformado. Ese fue el principio de la Resurrección, porque el Señor Jesús fue las primicias de ella—el principio de la cronología de la Resurrección.

Y hoy, en el quinto domingo de Pascua, vemos una visión del cumplimiento de esa cronología. (more…)

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The hardships of this life, within the timeline of the Resurrection

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5th Sunday of Easter, Year C: April 28, 2013
Acts 14:21-27; Ps 145; Rev 21:1-5; John 13:31-35

Four weeks ago, on Easter Sunday, we celebrated the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ from the dead. For, after his passion and crucifixion and death and burial, on the third day he was raised from the dead, gloriously alive, his body transformed. That was the beginning: for our Lord Jesus was the firstfruits of the Resurrection.

And today, on the 5th Sunday of Easter, we catch a glimpse of the fulfillment of the Resurrection. (more…)

Immaculate Conception: All beautiful!

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The Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary:
Dec. 8, 2012
Gen 3:9-15, 20; Ps 98; Eph 1:3-6, 11-12; Luke 1:26-38

“Where are you?” we hear the Lord God call to Adam in the first reading. “Where are you?” For we read in the previous verse that the Lord is walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and Eve have hidden themselves. On previous days, surely, they had run out to meet their beloved Creator with joy as soon as they perceived his presence near them. But now they have sinned for the first time. They have allowed fear and greed and lies to drive a wedge between them and God, and to reshape them in that twisted image; to place that stain upon their hearts, and upon human nature itself which they would pass on to their descendents forever after. Suspecting, accusing, hiding, lying, taking, killing: all of this and more in the stain of original sin. (more…)

What kind of king is Jesus?

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Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, Year B: Nov. 25, 2012
Dan 7:13-14; Ps 93; Rev 1:5-8; John 18:33-37

In our Gospel reading today, it is the morning of Good Friday. Jesus had been captured and questioned during the night by the Jewish authorities—but, because they are not authorized to carry out the death penalty, they have brought him to the Roman governor, Pontius Pilate, seeking his execution. And so we hear Pilate’s initial questioning of Jesus.

He begins by asking, “Are you the king of the Jews?” And do you notice that Jesus does not answer this question directly? Instead, he asks Pilate a question: “Do you say this on your own or have others told you about me?” Who is questioning, and who is being questioned, has been reversed. Now it is Jesus examining Pilate: his heart, his thoughts, his intentions, his identity. How ready is Pilate to accept Jesus as king? (more…)

Immaculate Conception: Open hands, open heart

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Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary:
Dec. 8, 2011

Gen 3:9-15, 20; Ps 98; Eph 1:3-6, 11-12; Luke 1:26-38

Today we celebrate that great gift that was given to the Virgin Mary from the first moment of her conception—a unique gift to prepare her for her unique vocation to be Mother of God. And our Scripture readings set her beside Eve—one woman and the other, so often compared, so often contrasted. And as the two of them come into focus, one thing that draws my attention is their body language—especially what they are doing with their hands.

For Eve’s hands, earlier in the same chapter of Genesis from which the first reading is taken, had closed—in fear and suspicion of God. She had reached out with them to take the fruit from the forbidden tree. (more…)

Inmaculada Concepción: Con las manos abiertas

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Inmaculada Concepción de la Virgen María:
8 Diciembre 2011

Gn 3, 9-15.20; Sal 97; Ef 1, 3-6.11-12; Lc 1, 26-38

En esta fiesta celebramos el don dado a la Virgen Maria en el primer instante de su concepción—un don especial, un don único, que la preparó para vivir su vocación única. Y para que entendamos este don, la primera lectura nos señala a Eva.

Y, en pensar en esta pareja de mujeres, sucede que pienso en su lenguaje gestual—en lo que hacen con sus manos.

Las manos de Eva, anteriormente en el capítulo, han cerrado en miedo y el recelo de Dios. (more…)

Christ the Healer

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Healing Mass: Nov. 10, 2011
Isa 53:1-5, 10-11; Ps 102; 2 Cor 12:7b-10; John 15:1-8

The Catechism tells us (1509):

“Heal the sick!” The Church has received this charge from the Lord and strives to carry it out by taking care of the sick as well as by accompanying them with her prayer of intercession. She believes in the life-giving presence of Christ, the physician of souls and bodies.

When the Lord created the world, sickness and death were not a part of it — for it was very good. Human beings, especially, he created in his own Image. And he created us in this state of “original harmony”: (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…)

Darkness, blindness, sin, and the light of Christ

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4th Sunday of Lent, Year A: April 3, 2011
1 Sam 16:1, 6-7, 10-13; Ps 23; Eph 5:8-14; John 9:1-41

You were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. What a great sentence! And what a cause for joy, on this Laetare Sunday when we rejoice as we remember the joyful purpose and goal for which we engage in Lenten penance: to attain to the resurrection and reach heavenly glory.

You were once darkness—and what does someone who is darkness look like? What did you look like when you were darkness? Well, first of all, you looked like a newborn baby. That’s what you looked like when you were darkness.

But how can that be? So little and cute and precious? (more…)