Archive for March 2, 2019

Eighth Sunday of Ordinary Time

Posted: March 2, 2019 by CatholicJules in Sunday Reflections

Heart and Mouth: Scott Hahn Reflects on the Eighth Sunday of Ordinary Time

Readings:

Sirach 27:4–7
Psalm 92:2–3, 13–16
1 Corinthians 15:54–58
Luke 6:39–45

In today’s readings we hear Jesus speaking in Galilee as well as a Jewish sage named Sirach writing in Jerusalem more than a century earlier. The two of them touch upon a single truth: The words that come out of us make known the hidden thoughts within us. Speech reveals the secrets of the heart.

Sirach teaches that speaking is “the test of men” and their character (Sir 27:7). One who is upright will utter words that are truthful and encouraging to others. But one whose heart is cluttered with “refuse” will be exposed, since the “fruit” of his mouth speaks volumes about the “tree” that produces it (Sir 27:6). Sirach also compares the testing of our words to clay fired in a kiln—if properly prepared, a useful vessel emerges; but if the clay is not fully dried, it will break apart in the extreme heat (Sirach 27:5).

In a similar way, Jesus insists that a person speaks “out of the abundance of the heart” (Luke 6:45). He too compares our speech, whether good or bad, to what grows on a tree: “For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit” (Luke 6:43).

Both readings urge us to make wholesome speech a habit. After all, much about who we are is brought to light through what we say. But there’s an additional step: The Lord is asking us to look inward, to examine our hearts and fill them with the “good treasure” that God desires.

Why do purity of heart and speech matter so much? Because, as Jesus declares elsewhere: “by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned” (Matt 12:37). They matter because they help to decide our final judgment, and this is where the Second Reading comes in. Paul reminds us that God will destroy death forever, and if we are to share in this victory and live forever with the Lord, then we must take all steps necessary to give our hearts and lips to what is good.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: March 2, 2019 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

Bless You Father creator of Heaven and Earth. You have created me in Your likeness and image. You have given me life, wisdom and understanding. And I remain in awe of Your wondrous creations, the magnitude of the love that goes into Your designs. I praise You Father for all Good comes from You and all in Your love.

Most of all I thank You Father for the precious gift of Your Son, our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ of whom we are able to retain our childlike innocence. For He restores our sanctity, our image distorted by sin. And gathers and unites us to be One in Him.

Look with Favour on Your children, keep us free from sin and bring us to everlasting life with You. Amen

First reading

Ecclesiasticus 17:1-13 †
Their ways cannot be hidden from his sight

The Lord fashioned man from the earth, to consign him back to it.
He gave them so many days’ determined time, he gave them authority over everything on earth.
He clothed them with strength like his own, and made them in his own image.
He filled all living things with dread of man, making him master over beasts and birds.
He shaped for them a mouth and tongue, eyes and ears, and gave them a heart to think with.
He filled them with knowledge and understanding, and revealed to them good and evil.
He put his own light in their hearts to show them the magnificence of his works.
They will praise his holy name, as they tell of his magnificent works.
He set knowledge before them, he endowed them with the law of life.
Their eyes saw his glorious majesty, and their ears heard the glory of his voice.
He said to them, ‘Beware of all wrong-doing’; he gave each a commandment concerning his neighbour.
Their ways are always under his eye, they cannot be hidden from his sight.

Gospel

Mark 10:13-16
It is to such as these little children that the kingdom of God belongs

People were bringing little children to Jesus, for him to touch them. The disciples turned them away, but when Jesus saw this he was indignant and said to them, ‘Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. I tell you solemnly, anyone who does not welcome the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.’ Then he put his arms round them, laid his hands on them and gave them his blessing.