Today's Scriptural Meditation Readings:
September 6 A..D. 2009
Scripture from today's Liturgy of the Word:
Psalm 146:7, 8-9, 9-10
A reflection on today's Scripture:
This Monday will mark the eighth anniversary of the September 11 ("9-11") terrorist attack on the World Trade Center, New York City.
While the starkness of that day and memories of the weeks that followed have grown dimmer, the insecurity that was created that day continues to haunt our lives. Over these past eight years, fear has spawned two horrible wars, and the world is still suffering the evils of terrorism.
In contrast, this Sunday's readings are filled with hope for our future. Isaiah assured the captive Israelites that, if they repent, their land and their people will again prosper and they will rejoice at the lavish blessings that will come to them. To all of us today who are held captive by a culture spoiled by war, drugs and a loss of respect for life, God holds out hope.
In the first reading, Isaiah tells us that new vitality will spring forth from the desert. It will bloom with fresh beauty, and the pools and springs will again overflow with refreshing water. What do we need to do to experience this "Second Spring"?
God tells us to strengthen our weak hands and make firm our feeble knees. Furthermore, we are to encourage one another with words like "Be brave! Fear not!" In other words, we are to rebuild the "ground zeros" in our lives left barren of hope and courage.
Fear can close our purse strings, and tempt us to clutch our possessions to ourselves, not sharing with those who are poor and destitute. In Isaiah and in James, we are warned of God's punishment on narrow and exclusive behavior. If our fear paralyzes our faith, God will exclude us from the kingdom.
In the Gospel, Jesus shows us the way to getting rid of prejudice. Traveling into non-Jewish territory, and much to the astonishment of His disciples, He heals some gentiles. These in turn, exclaim in wonder, "He does all things well; He even makes the deaf hear and the dumb speak!"
This weekend, we beg Christ to open our eyes and hearts to a world in confusion. Be brave. Be courageous; be impartial in sharing your possessions, especially the Good News.
~ Msgr. Paul Whitmore
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Sunday, September 6, 2009
Twenty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lives of the saints:
Full Scripture text from today's Liturgy of the Word:
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