September 16, 2018: Twenty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Catholic Social Teaching: Rights and Responsibility
The lay faithful must strengthen their spiritual and moral lives, becoming ever more competent in carrying out their social duties. A deepening of interior motivations and the acquisition of a style appropriate for their work in the social and political spheres are the results of a dynamic and ongoing formation directed above all to the attainment of harmony between life, in all its complexity, and faith. In the experience of believers, in fact, “there cannot be two parallel lives in their existence: on the one hand, the so-called ‘spiritual’ life, with its values and demands; and on the other, the so-called ‘secular’ life, that is, life in a family, at work, in social relationships, in the responsibilities of public life and in culture”.
Bringing faith and life together requires following the path judiciously indicated by the characteristic elements of Christian living: the Word of God as a reference point; the liturgical celebration of the Christian Mystery; personal prayer; the authentic experience of Church enhanced by the particular formational services of discerning spiritual guides; the exercise of the social virtues and a persevering commitment to cultural and professional formation. (546) Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church
First Reading: Isaiah 50:5-9a
Psalm: 116:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 8-9
Second Reading: James 2:14-18
Gospel: Mark 27-35
Catechism of the Catholic Church
The fruits of charity are joy, peace, and mercy; charity demands beneficence and fraternal correction; it is benevolence; it fosters reciprocity and remains disinterested and generous; it is friendship and communion: Love is itself the fulfillment of all our works. There is the goal; that is why we run: we run toward it, and once we reach it, in it we shall find rest. (1829) From the Daily Roman Missal, Introduction to the Twenty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle B
Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church: No references this week
Do we try to save our lives with the security of a good job, not venturing beyond neighborhoods appearing safe, devouring the latest health food, optimizing exercise or pampering ourselves with luxuries? Jesus asks us not to save our lives for our sake, but to lose them for His sake AND the sake of the gospel. A disposition contingent on the word AND. For the sake of Jesus AND the gospel entails we live our lives for Jesus, the Son of God, our Lord and Savior AND the gospel. For Jesus wants us to embrace his divinity and humanity AND all the meaning he bestowed through the gospel to give us life. The spiritual reality and incarnation of Jesus does not divest itself from the meaning of the gospel. And the gospel disassociated from Jesus has no credence. So we m must be fully cognizant of losing our lives for Jesus’ sake AND that of the gospel, for they are inseparable from one another. Our worship of divine praise must tether us to gospel precepts. Our reception of the Real Presence must guide us to gospel focused lives. Lives lived with the entire spectrum of gospel values must be rooted in our faith in the Lord. We cannot be “or” people , but must live engaged in the depth and breadth of understanding the relational meaning of AND.
AND, a word that takes our faith to manifest works crafted by the gospel. For we look at the world with vision framed by gospel acclamations to care for the most vulnerable needing substance to meet the basic needs of human dignity. A stance beyond cliche platitudes to serve in loving charity and strive for justice leavening systemic change. This is where we find life in losing the safety of self-indulgence to live our lives for Jesus through his gospel expressed by our actions to free our souls. When we come to understanding this spiritual paradigm of AND, we can rebel no more or turn our backs on the Lord, for He is our help in seeing what gives us life.
Individual Reflection: James 2:14-18
What is one way you will manifest your faith through works this week? How can you invite and encourage others to do likewise?
Family Reflection: Mark 8:27-35
What is the biggest challenge to incorporate living for Jesus AND the sake of the gospel? What are three ways your family might better live faith in the context of “AND”?
Prayer: September 21st is the Feast Day of St Matthew
Reflect on the lectionary readings and how Jesus calls you to follow him everyday.
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 3, 2018 The reflection maybe used in parish bulletins, newsletters or for faith sharing groups without copyright concern.