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Revelation or Reason?

> Readings Does your belief depend on your own understanding? In other words, do you try to fit revelation into your own reason? Jesus’ challenge today is to break away from the belief of the world, to not limit God to our own understanding and to reject the presumption that ‘seeing is believing.’ If you find it hard to do this, let us bring it back to our own experiences. Did you know your eye...

Learning to see things God’s way…

> Readings In his book, Francis of Assisi, G.K. Chesterton speaks movingly of the complete “spiritual overturn in which complete humiliation becomes complete holiness or happiness” that Francis underwent in his conversion from a hedonistic young man seeking worldly glory to the joyous beggar we all recognise, who embraced Lady Poverty as his only bride. Today’s readings illustrate the same radi...

“Whoever does the will of my heavenly Father is my brother, and sister, and mother”

> Readings In today’s Gospel, Jesus invites us into the most intimate of associations: the motley band of those who, like Jesus, desire nothing more passionately than to do the will of his Father. Jesus taught us to call God our Father and encouraged us to pray “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” As our head prays those words, may our heart come to truly desire wha...

It’s That Simple

> Readings Can it be that simple? Surely God is asking more of us? The call to holiness is complex, difficult and stupendous? Yes? Well, actually no. Context is everything. The prophet Micah does just that for us. He tells us today that God leads us out of enslavement to the “Egyptians.” The temptation is to think that our response to this liberating act has to be grandiose. Well, no. God says,...

The Purpose of Holiness

> Readings Jesus shows us the point and purpose of holiness in the Jewish law; the recognition of the Holy One. In fact, the Old Testament itself interprets the law this way. Jesus recalls the story of David who fed his men when they were hungry from the Temple provisions. These were the provisions just for the priests, not to be touched by regular people. But David, as the anointed and blessed...

Follow = Come + Go

> Readings What is faith? It is a life in relationship with Christ; following Him through participating in the life and mission of the Church. So how do you enter into this relationship? Simple. It is about responding to Christ’s call to ‘come’ and ‘go.’ Jesus asks all who labour and are overburdened to ‘come to Him’ and He will give you rest. As St Augustine says, our ‘hearts are restless unti...

Everything is a gift!

> Readings God’s anger at the arrogance of the Assyrians in the first reading contrasts dramatically with Jesus’ delight in how God blesses the humble, in the Gospel. It would seem pretty clear that God doesn’t operate through our self-confidence and strengths, but rather through our openness to needing God’s help. Little children don’t depend on their own resources, everything is given to them...

The Power of Repentance

> Readings What is the appropriate and instinctive response when someone encounters Jesus? Well, there is no ‘correct’ emotional response to a genuine encounter with the Lord, but in the spiritual tradition, as responses go, a deep repentance is understood as normal, and certainly beneficial. It is all the more beneficial when we understand that genuine repentance is not beating yourself up or ...

Master Plan

> Readings There is a genre of films predicated around the hatching of a highly complex plan by confidence tricksters to steal money from an unpleasant villain. Movies like The Sting and Oceans 11 are examples. In each case, the result seems disastrous until the trap within a trap is sprung. Famed Director Spike Lee took the idea further in Inside Man. The film unfolds a highly elaborate scheme...

Bearing fruit and moving mountains

> Readings The structure of today’s Gospel passage seems strange. It begins with a story of Jesus cursing a fig tree for not having fruit, transitions to Jesus clearing the money changers from the Temple and finishes back at the fig tree with a message about the importance of faith. The only things that they seem to have in common are Jesus’ response. However, this is one of those places in the...

Who Needs Bread?

> Readings You do. Today we celebrate Corpus Christi – the Body of Christ – where Jesus say to you, ‘this is my body; this is my blood.’ The Eucharist is central to the life, mission, and prayer of the Catholic Church. It is at the heart of our faith and gives meaning to all we believe. Why? Our sacramental participation is participating in the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. Entering ...

Love’s choice…

> Readings There is a story told about Jesus appearing to St Catherine of Siena and offering her a choice of a crown of gold or a crown of thorns. In love with Jesus, and desiring to imitate him in all things, she chose the crown of thorns. Today’s gospel shows Jesus trying to warn his disciples of his own choice of redemptive suffering over earthly glory. Like Catherine’s choice, his is a choi...

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