September 15, 2019: Twenty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Catholic Social Teaching: Option for the Poor and Vulnerable
Water is a human right…see Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church quote below
First Reading: Exodus 32:7-11, 13-14
Psalm: 51:3-4, 12-1317, 19
Second Reading: 1st Timothy 1:12-17
Catechism of the Catholic Church
The Gospel is the revelation in Jesus Christ of God’s mercy to sinners. The angel announced to Joseph: “You shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” The same is true of the Eucharist, the sacrament of redemption: “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. (1846) From the Daily Roman Missal, Introduction to the Twenty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C
Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church:
The principle of the universal destination of goods also applies naturally to water, considered in the Sacred Scriptures as a symbol of purification (cf. Ps 51:4; Jn 13:8) and of life (cf. Jn 3:5; Gal 3:27). “As a gift from God, water is a vital element essential to survival; thus, everyone has a right to it”. Satisfying the needs of all, especially of those who live in poverty, must guide the use of water and the services connected with it. Inadequate access to safe drinking water affects the well-being of a huge number of people and is often the cause of disease, suffering, conflicts, poverty and even death. For a suitable solution to this problem, it “must be set in context in order to establish moral criteria based precisely on the value of life and the respect for the rights and dignity of all human beings”. (484)
A molten calf, a real cow that moos, a heard of cows, in reality or as metaphorical symbols of created, crafted items or possessiveness of creation transcend to idols when they become symbols of worship. To transfer deference owed to God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, to items we see or own, distorts our lives prerogatives away from the Creator to created things. Materialism displaces the sacred, as we fail to trust the unseen and eternal while grasping for the present, but transitory. Living our lives for immediate eyefuls, hands laden with gratification instead of pondering the realm of life woven together. Infinite molecules of creation, countless drops of water filling the ocean without the work of human inertia, yet define the majesty of God, mercy beyond words, making an invitation for no distractions by idols needed for a serene, hopeful, joyful life. A life modeled by the poor who are in communion with God. We can say gimme, gimme, gimme but satisfaction, contentment never comes. And only in a place far from God does one come to their senses to realize the hollowness, futility idols impart. The sin of not loving God above everything and everyone. To surrender idols, the possessions, feelings of grandeur about oneself comes with a spiritual power washing of one’s heart to renew the inherent spark of God in all souls to not spurn Him. An affirmation of God trusting us to do His will, even if we have been a persecutor, blasphemer or down right arrogant in unbelief and living with the proverbial swine. But the patience of God looks merciful on us to search us out when lost from His ways and celebrates with joy when we come to our senses. And He asks those living in His ways not to dismiss, insult, point fingers or pout about and dismiss God’s lavish mercy towards those struggling with belief and walking down a path of returning to their Source. For if we have truly abandoned idols and believe and relish God’s mercy then we should encourage and affirm all seekers with the love God has loved us with. In doing any less means we have turned our faith into an idol. Placed on a pedestal of sanctimonious holiness unwilling to join the party of life. Crushing all pearls of great wisdom into chards of sharp projectiles to deflate, discount the sincerity of faith arising in others. Withhold from them the ring of fidelity, the celebration due all believers and wallow in indigent attitudes to not celebrate all God offered them in the collective celebration of faith. A faith of acknowledgment, but minuscule reality of what God offers, no matter where people are on their journey. The failure to see the life arising in them from God is indivisible even as others share the infinite gift. Their lack of rejoicing when a lost sheep returns means they do not have life, are still lost, struggling, even if not acknowledged, while in isolation with personal holiness from the union with the lavishness of God. Idols come from extremes, with possessions to piousness, to both discount God’s centrality and abundance that ask we seek balance in our lives to love God and neighbor.
Individual Reflection:1st Timothy 1:12-17
September 21st is the Feast of St Matthew. Reflect on the transformation faith and belief has brought in all aspects of your life.
Family Reflection: Luke 15:1-32
September 15th is Our Lady of Sorrows. Reflect on the Seven Sorrows of Mary, the prophecy of Simeon, the flight to Egypt, the loss of Jesus in the temple, the meeting with Jesus on the Way of the Cross, the Crucifixion, the taking sown of Jesus’ body from the cross and the burial of Jesus. How are people experiencing those sorrows in the world today? What can your family do to comfort them and help them move forward in faith?
Prayer: September 15th is Our Lady of Sorrows. Prayerful reflect on the sequence for this day:
Blogs to Visit:
As we reflect upon Mary’s presence in the mysteries of the Rosary, we are blessed to know her. For her journey, a timeless trek, calls us to surrender, continuing conversion, humbleness and justice now.
Weekly lectionary reflections, for faith sharing groups, parish bulletins, newsletters or personal prayer, from the synergy of the Word we hear and the rich tradition of Catholic Social Teaching.
Catholic Social Teaching offers seven principles for upholding life in our thoughts, decisions and actions.
How we do Catholic Social Teaching.
Creation sustainability ministry resources in the spirit of the St Francis Pledge.
Social Ministry Resources Engaging Parishes: Monthly and liturgical seasons resources for use with parish websites, bulletins and newsletters
List one or two upcoming events, legislative action alerts or social justice websites
By Barb Born September 7, 2019 The reflection maybe used in parish bulletins, newsletters or for faith sharing groups without copyright concern.