Tag Archives: Jubilee Year of Mercy

Gospel Reflection for August 14, 2016, 19th Sunday Ordinary Time

9 Aug

Sunday Readings: Jeremiah 38.4-6, 8-10; Hebrews 12.1-4; Luke 12.49-53

“I came to bring fire to the earth…I have baptism with which to be baptized, and what stress I am under until it is completed!”

(Luke 12.49)

When the evangelist Luke writes about A.D. 85, Jesus has completed his baptism — his suffering, death, resurrection, and return to God, but he has not come again in glory. Meanwhile Christian faith has spread not only among Jews but among Gentiles and created conflicts. Baptism is one such conflict. Among Gentiles baptism takes the place of circumcision but some Pharisees who have become Christians object. They think Gentiles should be circumcised and instructed in keeping the law of Moses.

The gospel anticipates dividing fires will persist. In his follow up the Synod of the Family that met in 2014 and 2015, Pope Francis invites the Church today into tough conversations that air differences. In this Jubilee Year of Mercy Pope Francis invokes the principle that “time is greater than space.” He favors processes that make room over time for mercy and grace to work in our lives.

What value do you experience in talking about difficult, even divisive, questions? How does time make room for grace to work?

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Gospel Reflection for February 28, 2016, 3rd Sunday of Lent

23 Feb
Photo via Flickr user Nate Angell

Photo via Flickr user Nate Angell

Sunday Readings: Exodus 3.1-8, 13-15; 1 Corinthians 10.1-6, 10-12; Luke 13.1-9

“For three years now I have come looking for figs on this tree and found none. Cut it down. Why should it take up space?”

(Luke 13.7)

Jesus’ parable of the fig tree reveals God’s hope and compassion for people. The gardener who cares for each tree pleads for more time and more care. A little more hoeing and fertilizing. Maybe it will bear fruit. In announcing the Jubilee Year of Mercy, Pope Francis begins, “Jesus Christ is the face of the Father’s mercy.”

Mercy lives visibly in Jesus. As we journey with Jesus to Jerusalem this Lent, Sunday’s gospel calls us to cultivate our capacity to show mercy, to love and care for one another, to abound in kindness as God does toward us.

What or whom will you give one more chance to bear fruit in your life? What special care will this require?

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