Monday, 30 November 2009

I will make you fishers of men!

This will be my fist weekday reflection of Advent, and I will see if I can keep it up. They will
be brief, possibly a few lines on the Gospel of the day...

Today we hear the calling of Peter and Andrew (on the feast day of St. Andrew), and James and John. Jesus calls Peter and Andrew while they are busy casting their nets. He tells them then will be fishers of men.. immediatly they drop tools, nets on their case, litterly leave everything behind and follow Him. The same happens with James and John.

This is an aspect of the being ready, to follow the Lords call when even we hear Him. It is to be attentive to the sound of His voice...

But there is another aspect of this Reading, which I like, and which ties with my comments yesterday about the time of actively waiting for the Lord.

In this Gospel we get as it where the two important aspects of our Chrisrion lives. The active and in a way the contemplative. While Peter and Andrew are active try to catch fish, James and John are mending the nets.

It is important to realise that both these element are realy important in our lives, and this advent season is a good time to realise this, to be ready, waiting for the glorious coming of our Saviour...

Saturday, 28 November 2009

Advent: a time of preparation, reflection and readiness

The old has gone, the new has come... the liturgical year has finished, the new one has started, as we are entering Advent! But what is Advent? Without trying to give an exact definition, I will briefly try to reflect on what Advent means to me, and hopefully this might be helpful for each one's own journey.

In the last week we might have reflected on the last year, and especially what has happened in our lives, but I guess more importantly how God might have been at work. Like I mentioned last week, it is often only a significant amount of time that we can see that the wobbly, uneven and twisted path we were walking on actually seemed much straighter than we initially thought... maybe we just had to be lead around a few difficulties on the way, in order not to get stuck in a swamp or fall down a cliff...

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

22,000 Young People in a Eucharistic Procession

Sure a lot of people have already seen this picture, but it just struck me when I came across it:
22,000 Young People in a Eucharistic Procession through Kansas City (More pictures on the Catholic Key)



Who said the Catholic Church is not alive!

Saturday, 21 November 2009

'Truth?' said Pilate. 'What is that?' (Joh 18:38 NJB)

The Gospel this week is taken from the gospel of John 18:33-17. It is the last Sunday of our liturgical year, the feast of Christ the King, and hence a Gospel regarding Jesus His kingship, not like kings on earth, but as King of Heaven. Next week we start Advent, the time of preparation for the birth of Jesus.

In the last weeks we have been walking with Jesus towards Jerusalem, as Luke often mentioned, and now the last Sunday of the year we are in Jerusalem. We can see the year as a journey, a journey we travel with our Lord, and now we finish in Jerusalem with Pilate, who asks Jesus "What is truth?" (Joh 18:38 RSV).

So what would we answer ourselves to this question? In the film 'the Passion' by Mel Gibson we hear Pilate talk about his truth, what will happen to him if the Jews get out of hand... the difficulties he has in his life. But such a truth, written with a small letter, is not really the same as what Jesus is talking about, but it seems that past which Pilate cannot see.

The dialogue between Pilate and Jesus is quite interesting to study, as it becomes obvious that Jesus is talking on a completely different level. Pilate start to ask Jesus, "Are you the King of the Jews?" (Joh 18:33 RSV). Jesus does not answer the question, but starts to challenge Pilate on his own thinking. Did he think this himself, or is he just accepting what everybody is saying.

Thursday, 19 November 2009

The Novices of the Irish Dominicans singing the Salve Regina

The Novices of the Irish Dominicans singing the Salve Regina in the little church in Gougane Barra, county Cork, Ireland:

Saturday, 14 November 2009

The sun will be darkened (Mk 13:24)

This weeks Gospel is taken from Mark 13:24-32. I will base my reflection on the first part of the Gospel reading. The last few weeks have been an interesting journey, in hindsight, and I think this part of the Gospel, where Jesus is quoting Isiah, is a good theme to build a personal reflection upon regarding this journey.

"But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken" Mk 13:24-25
"The sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light". The journey into the night is a slow gradual one, it is full day time and the sun is shining, everything looks beautiful, but then slowly the power of its light fades away, and the bright colors filling our soul become less distinct, and gradually, without being able to observe the change we find ourself in the night...

Saturday, 7 November 2009

She has put in everything she had, her whole living (Mk 12:44)

The Gospel for this Sunday is from Mark 12:28-44. The passage contains two sayings of Jesus, which may not on a first reading seem to have that much in common, but on reflection it seems to me they do.

In the first passage, Jesus is warning his disciples about the way of the scribes, who "like to go about in long robes" (Mar 12:38 RSV), and "have salutations in the market places" (Mar 12:38 RSV). They like to be the center of attention, but their heart is not orientated toward God. At the same time of showing off they "devour widows' houses" (Mar 12:40 RSV) and their prayers are only "a pretense" (Mar 12:40 RSV)


Our relation with God is personal and has to be that way: "when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret" (Mat 6:6 RSV) With this does not mean that it is not communal. We are all part of the body of Christ and very importantly we come together to celebrate for example the sacrament of the Mass every Sunday, but we do not show off how good we are. Jesus put a lot of emphasis on the communal aspect of the Church, but there is a risk that if we don't have our personal relation with Jesus that it becomes shallow very quickly, and especially when we replace it with public display.

Articles

The Irish Dominicans have a website called Dominicans Interactive with online resources. We also have an iPhone/iPad App, which can be found in the iTunes App Store.


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