Today's Scriptural Meditation Readings:
August 30 A..D. 2009
Scripture from today's Liturgy of the Word:
Deuteronomy 4:1-2, 6-8
Psalm 15:2-3, 3-4, 4-5
James 1:17-18, 21b-22, 27
Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23
A reflection on today's Scripture:
Just as we're beginning to enjoy the belated summer heat in our part of the country, we find with a shock that it's time to think of Labor Day picnics and September programs for church and school!
Today's scriptures could prompt us to reflect more deeply upon the current issues of the day: healthcare and God's law. The readings for this Sunday fit well with our new resolutions for the coming season.
Moses reminds the people that the Ten Commandments, which he is giving them, bind them to a sacred covenant with their Creator. "Observe them carefully, for thus will you give evidence of your wisdom and intelligence to the nations. . . ." (see Deuteronomy 4:6) That passage connects their faith in the Law with reason. In other words, only a foolish person will violate the Law.
Further advice is given us in today's second reading from James. He tells us: "Be doers of the word and not hearers only. . . ." (see James 1:22) In other words, we must always put our faith into action. In the Gospel today, Jesus scolds the Pharisees and religious leaders for focusing on the washing of hands rather than the larger issues of Divine justice, mercy, and love.
One of the ways we can act on faith is to carefully listen to our Holy Father and our Bishops in the current healthcare debate. Preservation of human life is a core teaching of the fifth commandment. Providing care for the poor, the sick and the elderly, the legal immigrant, and the unemployed are also part of the command, "Love thy neighbor as thyself."
Jesus told us very clearly in the parable of the Good Samaritan who is included in that term! Let the Gospel values of Jesus guide us and our legislators as they struggle to form right policies in the months ahead.
~ Msgr. Paul Whitmore
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Sunday, August 30, 2009
Twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lives of the saints:
Full Scripture text from today's Liturgy of the Word:
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