22 Sunday C - Who do you Invite?

From Fr. Jude Botelho:

The first reading from the book of Sirach is a lesson on humility. While pride is the deadliest of the seven deadly sins, because it is founded on falsehood which destroys ourselves and those around us, humility is perhaps the most characteristic of Christian virtues. The humble person finds favour with God not because that favour is a reward for humility, but because humility, like faith, means abandoning self-assertion, all trust in oneself, and allowing God to act where we can do nothing.

21 Sunday C: Universality of Salvation

From Fr. Jude Botelho:

The first reading from the last part of the Book of Isaiah is a prophecy of consolation for the community of Israel that had been gathered again after the exile, but who were still experiencing difficulty and uncertainty about their future. The prophet proclaims a glorious future in which mankind’s covenant with God is opened to the whole human family. Returnees from every part of the then known world, who had been scattered would return to Jerusalem. Nations of every culture and race will lead the Israelites home. Salvation is extended to all the ends of the earth. For it is through holiness that one will enter the city of God.

20 Sunday C: Set the Earth on Fire

Tony De Melo:  Where's the Fire? 

There was a man who invented the art of making fire. He took his tools and went to a tribe in the north, where it was very cold, bitterly cold. He taught the people there to make fire. The people were very interested. He showed them the uses to which they could put fire: they could cook, could keep themselves warm, etc. They were so grateful that they had learned the art of making fire. But before they could express their gratitude to the man, he disappeared. He wasn’t concerned with getting their recognition or gratitude; he was concerned about their well-being. He went to another tribe, where he again began to show them the value of his invention.

Assumption of Mary - Aug 15

Fr. Jude Botelho:

The first reading from the Book of the Apocalypse conveys its message through the medium of extraordinary visions and dreams. The description of a ‘woman clothed with the sun’ is imagery linked to a goddess in classical antiquity. Traditional commentaries identify her as Mary the new Eve, but she could also stand for Wisdom personified, the heavenly Jerusalem, or the Church. She also stands for Israel, whose pangs of birth represent the trials to be endured before the coming of the Messiah. The dragon, God’s traditional opponent in the Hebrew Scriptures, is an ancient symbol of chaos and all the forces of evil opposed to God.
In the second reading from the letter to the Corinthians, St Paul, in line with Mary’s representation as the new Eve, refers to Jesus as the new Adam: “just as all men die in Adam, so all are brought to life in Christ.” If the first reading referred to the troubled beginning, the birth pangs, so ‘the end’ will see a responsible son, Jesus, handing over ‘the kingdom’, the world renewed and freed from every oppression, to the Father. Christ is the first fruit of God’s saving action, and after him salvation is assured to all who follow him. On the feast of the assumption, if Mary is seen as the new Eve, then she shares intimately in the fruit of the redemption and so is assumed body and soul into heaven.

19 Sunday - Be Alert and Awake

From Fr. Jude Botelho:

 The Book of Sirach written a little less than two hundred years before Christ’s time, reminds its readers that God is no respecter of personages, he listens to the humble and the poor. In a corrupt and unjust society as the one that existed in ancient times and still exists today, the situation of the poor was seen as totally helpless. Without financial backing and social influence the poor would never get justice when they were wronged. Keeping this situation in mind, the author says God will come to the rescue of the poor, he will punish the guilty and vindicate the poor, humbling their oppressors. In the words of the response psalm: ‘When the poor man called the Lord heard him.’