September 9, 2012: 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
Catholic Social Teaching: Solidarity
We are one human family whatever our national, racial, ethnic, economic and ideological differences. We are our brothers’ and sisters’ keepers, wherever they may be. Loving our neighbor has global dimensions in a shrinking world.
First Reading: Isaiah 35:4-7a
2nd Reading: James 2:1-5
Gospel: Mark 7: 31-37
James 2: 1-9
“Only the recognition of human dignity can make possible the common and personal growth of everyone…Together with equality in the recognition of the dignity of each person and of every people there must also be an awareness that it will be possible to safeguard and promote human dignity only if this is done as a community, by the whole of humanity…” Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church, 145
Doing God’s work helps make God present in the world. A process not woven in fine threads of individual initiative adorned with golden paths leading to dead end pursuits, but open eyes, ears and hearts actively securing justice for the oppressed. Eyes focused beyond appearance or the hue of skin tone to dwell on circumstances causing people to sit on the floor of humanity, instead of selecting their seat, with dignity, at the table of humanity. Ears hearing beyond grammatical errors, rooted in lack of educational opportunities, or an accent to hear the richness of experiences. Hearts drawn to see that those appearing poor in the world’s perception are treated with equality in economic, social and faith based facets of life. For if we close our eyes, mute our ears and let our hearts petrify to stone, we deny our faith, unity in the Eucharist, the Gospel and miracles of Jesus –the inclusiveness of God’s kingdom.
Lord. Let us not make distinctions and judge in subtleties of appearance. For you desire us to open our eyes, ears and heart to the rich streams of faith found in the unpretentious realms of society that the world slights. Thirsting for your kingdom, in our love for You, help us support the just, welcome the stranger and thwart oppression.
Individual Reflection: James 2: 1-5
Do you see partiality in your parish? How might you be a voice for positive change?
Family Reflection: James 2:1
Share dinner and conversation with friends of a different ethnic group
List one or two upcoming events, action alerts or social justice web sites
By Barb Born September 2012 The reflection maybe used in parish bulletins, newsletters and for discussion groups without copyright concerns.