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May 2021

Trinity Sunday Cycle B

Trinity sunday

May 30,2021

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After the 50 days of celebrating Easter...

We now begin, liturgically, Ordinary Time

 

 

 

 

 

Father son spirit

 

 

How would you explain the Holy Trinity?

 

By Words???

 

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By Art???

 

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or some other way??

Holy trinity sunday


We all know that the Trinity is ONE GOD

-THREE PERSONS-

FATHER

SON

HOLY SPIRIT

 

The readings for this day give us a little insight into the love for us of the Trinity, which is itself love

 

Book-deuteronomy-one-books-bible-38715902

 

In the first reading, Moses is addressing the people just before they cross over into the promise land.

 

 

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He assures them that God will give them a land and calls them to be faithful to the One God.  

 

Sometimes, like the people in the scripture, it is so easy to forget or to really appreciate   God's love for us humans.  The Trinity is love and that love is given to each of us.

 

  Romans


In the second reading we see how much God loves each and everyone of us.  He calls us His child, His children.

We can always call out to Him, ABBA, Father.

 

Romans 8-15

 

His love, making us a child of God, is the greatest gift we could possibly receive, and along with Eternal Life.  

Wow!  

What love.  

He will never give up on us.  

We can call out to Him again and again.  

ABBA, Father.

 

He will always welcome us back to Him with mercy, compassion, and forgiveness, after all each of us are His Child.

 

Matthewgospel

Jesus gives his followers a mission.

 

 

Commissioning

 

That same mission is given to each of us.

 

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Each of us, at our Baptism, was commissioned to go out to the world and let others know of God's great love, the love of the Trinity, that we are to make present in the today's world.

  Go make

For most of us, our actions speak louder than our words.  It is amazing what a smile can do, or opening the door for someone, or saying thanks, or offering help,or just saying a few words to a stranger, etc.

These are only a few of the ways of making God's love present to others.  

Of course we need to pray for the gift and courage to make the unconditional love of God, even to the stranger, even to the enemy, present to all we daily encounter.

 

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We are now in... 

Ordinary time

 

 

 

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Pentecost Sunday Cycle A B & C

May 23, 2021

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  Pentecost sunday label

 

For some fifty days we have been daily celebrating the Resurrection of the Lord, Easter.  In spite of our times of spiritual failure, the Lord has shone us that death, sin, has been overcome.  There is always a way to find forgiveness and to once again move toward the gift given freely to us, eternal life.  So, why wouldn't we celebrate for some fifty days? 

Alleluia, Christ is Risen.  

Pentecost will end this season of Easter as the Paschal candle, the sign of the Resurrected Christ, is removed from its place in the sanctuary, and on Monday we begin the season of Ordinary Time.

  

 

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The first reading tells of the Holy Spirit coming in a mighty wind from heaven and then tongues of fire that  would change the lives of those in the room when it happened.

 

The Apostles did not really understanding what had happened to Jesus. In spite of all they heard, experienced or been told, they were filled with doubt and fear.

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The rough times in our lives that cause doubt and fear can seem like a strong wind,  and often it is only in retrospect that we recognize God, the Holy Spirit was working in our lives.

 

The psalm that we sing on this Sunday reminds us to always ask for the Holy Spirit, especially in those times when we doubt what God is allowing in our lives

Lord, send out your Spirit, and renew the face of the earth.

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Come Holy Spirit

The words of this chant can be prayed over and over as a way asking for the Holy Spirit.

 

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In the second reading, Paul writes to the Corinthian community and tells them that they all have received gifts from the Holy Spirit and they are to use them to make God present in the world.  

Each and everyone of us has been given gifts to use to make God present, but how hard it seems at times to see our gifts.  They can be the most simple things like patience, forgiveness, compassion, a willingness to listen, a word of support, a smile and a "hello" even to a stranger, going out of our way for the other, even when it is not convenient, etc.

But we often think to receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit is something spectacular.

Rarely, does God let us see the gifts we possess. And sometimes we even don't believe we have any of the gifts of the Spirit. What a lie.

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Recognize that Jesus comes to us often, saying, " Peace be with you."

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We hear this in the Gospel, and also that we are being sent into the world everyday and in every situation to make the mercy of God present to all we encounter.  Even in the most trying time and situation, we can pray that we will recognize Jesus is with us, giving us peace and the promise of the Holy Spirit, but like those in the the readings, we must wait. 

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Let's hope this Pentecost will be, for each of us, a time to see the Holy Spirit inspiring us in all the events in our lives.

The Spirit is there even showing us our sins and giving us courage, time after time, to seek God's mercy and forgiveness, which will always be there.

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Here are the words to the Sequence we will hear before the reading of the Gospel.  They can be another source of courage for each of us.

Sequence – Veni, Sancte Spiritus

Come, Holy Spirit, come!
And from your celestial home
Shed a ray of light divine!

Come, Father of the poor!
Come, source of all our store!
Come, within our bosoms shine.

You, of comforters the best;
You, the soul’s most welcome guest;
Sweet refreshment here below;

In our labor, rest most sweet;
Grateful coolness in the heat;
Solace in the midst of woe.

O most blessed Light divine,
Shine within these hearts of yours,
And our inmost being fill!

Where you are not, we have naught,
Nothing good in deed or thought,
Nothing free from taint of ill.

Heal our wounds, our strength renew;
On our dryness pour your dew;
Wash the stains of guilt away:

Bend the stubborn heart and will;
Melt the frozen, warm the chill;
Guide the steps that go astray.

On the faithful, who adore
And confess you, evermore
In your seven fold gift descend;

Give them virtue’s sure reward;
Give them your salvation, Lord;
Give them joys that never end. Amen.
Alleluia.

 

 

Pentecost will end this season of Easter as the Paschal candle, the sign of the Resurrected Christ, is removed from its place in the sanctuary, and on Monday we begin the season of Ordinary Time.

 

Ordinary time

 

 

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THE ASCENSION Cycle B

Celebrated the Ascension on Sunday May 16, 2021

 

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As we look at the readings for the Ascension, let's try to place ourselves in the mindset of the Apostles. They do not understand why Jesus has to suffer and die. That is not what they expected the Messiah to have to go through. The Messiah was to take away all their worldly problems, solve all the political problems of that day; to rid them of the Roman control and to become a political leader.
Review the Readings

I find myself, at times, in the same mindset, especially when God does not work in my life as I think He should. No more problems, no more conflicts, no more...etc.

 

Acts 1 1-11

This first reading was  to remind those early Christians of the promise of the Holy Spirit, who would  give strength and courage.  

Why do we fear?

Why do we doubt?

 

It is so easy to forget, or to not believe, that we  too, have been given that same promise.  

So we can, at times, just wait around for God to work as we expect Him to act.

A good reminder for us are the words of the angel to those watching the Ascension of Jesus,

"Why do you stand there looking up?"

 

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Don't we do the same thing when we find life difficult, and when God does not seem to work in the way we expected?

 

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Paul's letter is his prayer for the early Christians; that they would become more  open to how God works, even in suffering and persecution.  You

That prayer is also for each of us, especially when life presents us with people and situations that are difficult and are not what we expected.  

So again...

Why do we fear?

Why do we doubt?

 

 

Mark 16:15-20
The Gospel let's the Apostles and us know that we have been sent to make Christ present in the world, to bring...

...His mercy,

...His compassion,

...His patience,

...His understanding

...to all, even to the enemy.

 

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Why do we, at times, doubt?

 

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"I am with you always," He says.

 

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Alleluia, Christ is Risen!

 

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Go into the world of our daily life!

Make Christ present!

 

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Sixth Sunday Easter Cycle B

May 9, 2021

 

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  6th Easter

 

 

 

 

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At the Last Supper Jesus talks with his Apostles.

What were they talking about???

 

The answer is ...

Love

Sometimes we think only in worldly terms as to what it means to love.  We all know how easy it is to love the person we respect, or the person who looks nice and dresses well, or the person who goes along with what we think and believe.  

Right?

 

  Bible readings

But this Sunday's readings challenge us to move in another direction;  to love those outside our own comfort zone.  

This is something that at first seems impossible.

 

Acts

In the first reading we hear of Peter going out of his comfort zone.

Shortly before this reading, he has had a vision, showing him that what God has made clean he must not reject.  This was dealing with what his Jewish background taught him about food.

 

 

 

 

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Peter now goes to the household of a Gentile, a non Jew, Cornelius, a Roman centurion. Everyone knew that you do not associate with these unclean gentiles, yet Peter goes to speak with this household, much as Jesus associated with the dirty, the gentiles and the sinner, with everyone.

 

Peter experiences the great faith that Cornelius, a gentile, and his household have and Peter sees that they are to be baptized.

 

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What a change from what the Jewish traditions of the first Christians insisted upon that you have to follow the Jewish religious laws. It is interesting that this became a dividing point for the primitive Church.  

The Christians who have converted from Judaism were insisting that gentiles who want to follow the Christian way, must first become Jews and follow Jewish ritual.  

 

In fact, the first Council of Jerusalem gathers and were inspired to say no to this idea.  

Council jer

All could become Christian and follow Christ without becoming Jews.  This change must have been difficult for many, just as today we have seen that changes are difficult for many.  

But the Holy Spirit continues to lead the Church, now as it did in primitive times.

What a great example of showing love to those gentiles, that in the Jewish society of the time, were considered unclean and rejected.

 

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In the second reading St. John, tells the community that it is this love that Jesus has given them that makes God present in the world.  That love is to be for everyone, even the enemy, even the one who wants to destroy us, whether physically, mentally, or spiritually.  That becomes the real challenge for all of us.

 

 Video Clip on the Gospel..Rev. Greg Friedman-Franciscan

 

 

John 15

In the Gospel reading, which is part of the discourse that Jesus gave at the Last Supper, speaks of love and how important that is for his followers.  He demonstrated with his Passion and death, what this love really is.  A love that to the world would seem ridiculous; love to all, even the enemy.  

 

You can't be serious!

How is this possible for us?  

 

We live in a world much like that of the primitive Church, in the respect of thinking that it is stupid to die for the enemy.  

Certainly, many could not understand how Jesus, after hours of suffering could forgive and love those who were the enemy.

Love-your-enemies

Yet, Jesus clearly says that He has chosen the Apostle, and also us, to make this love present in the world even today.  

 

To die for the other may not be a physical dying, but a psychological dying.  

To show compassion, forgiveness, mercy, tolerance, patience, etc, can at moments, be ways for us to die for the enemy, e.g. the one we find difficult at the moment.

 

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For sure, there will be moments we fail at this love, but the way to grow in this direction is to recognize that we don't love the enemy, and not to just dismiss the lack of love by thinking, well, no one could love in this way, after all, I am not Christ.  

But wait one moment.  In our baptism we, like the Apostles at the Last Supper, are called to make God present in the world by the same love that Christ demonstrated.

Body of christ

When we fail, and we will at times, but it is important to continue to pray for our own conversion, so that on our deathbed we can forgive and love even the ones who have hurt us.

We can and will do this because....

 

Christ is Risen, Alleluia

Christ is Truly Risen, Alleluia

 

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