Fr. Andrew M. Greeley
Twelfth Sunday of Ordinary Time
Jesus loved surprises. His Father in heaven was the God of surprises, so it would naturally follow that Jesus reveled in surprising people with good things. In the Gospel today he surprises a woman who has been plagued by a physical problem, and the parents of a little girl thought to be dead. Both woman and the parents desperately hoped for a surprise. They were not sure there would be one, but they were at least open to the possibility. Jesus liked people who had the openness of spirit and mind to be ready for surprises. Those who in the core of their personalities believed in a God of surprises.
That’s just what The Father in heaven wants of all of us.
Jesus would have had a much harder time helping the cynical, the sardonic, the bitter, the conniving who might want to purchase miracles from him. So the simple faith of these simple people occasioned the grace that Jesus had within him.
Once upon a time, a certain pastor, worn out from phone calls and summons to the office was slipping off to the land of Nod when a call came from the teenager who manned the office in the evening. Father, there’s a kind of cute elderly man down who wants to talk to you. “Kind of cute” meant that the young woman did not deem him dangerous. The man was well-dressed, handsome, genial, Yes, kind of cute.
Probably a nut said the pastor to himself. He wants to complain about the sermons last Sunday or the Bishop or the Pope. Yes, he said, not particularly happy to have been disturbed so late on a cold winter evening. You don’t remember me, do you, father? I’ve seen a lot of faces in the last forty years in a rectory. No reason to remember me. I was hitchhiking home from college because we didn’t have much money in those days and I borrow fifty dollars from you. I promised to pay you back and I never did. You were from Notre dame? That’s right, Father. What my kids call a Domer. I figured I’d better pay you back. What kind of interest do you charge?
The priest remembered that he had like the young man because of his grace and charm. No, interest he said. That wouldn’t be fair. The man took out his checkbook. How about two hundred percent, he said as the grinned and wrote a check. Could I bring in my kids and introduce them. Megan, he said to the teenager, who he knew had been listening at the door, could you make us a pot of tea?
Digest of Articles from Catholic Blogs and Websites
June 23, 2013
Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Jesus asks his disciples what the crowds were saying about him. Then he asked his disciples, “But who do you say I am?’ Peter replies, “The Christ of God.” Thereupon, Jesus says, “The Son of Man must suffer greatly…be killed and on the third day be raised.” Then Jesus says that anyone who wishes to follow him as a disciple must also be ready to give up his life for his sake.
Twelfth Sunday: Our Father Will Never Leave Us
Although last week was Father’s Day, I want to tell you a story about a Father that really fits today’s readings. I believe Scott Hahn tells this story, but I am not sure it is uniquely his.
The story takes place on December 7, 1988 in Spitak, Armenia. A horrible earthquake had just struck, and a frenzied businessman ran from his office to his little boy’s school. His son was a kindergartner. He had dropped him off at school about four hours earlier and had said to him, as he said to him every day, “You be a good boy, and remember, you father loves you and will always care for you.” And now an earthquake had hit. The initial reports were that there was destruction in the area of his son’s school.
Messianic Secret — the Meaning of the Cross
Jesus asks a simple question. “Who do the crowds say that I am?” (Luke 9:18) All volunteer an answer, because describing other people’s opinions requires no personal commitment whatsoever. But then Jesus asks them a tougher question: “Who do YOU say that I am?” Answering this one entails sticking your neck out a bit.
The impetuous Peter blurts out what they are all secretly thinking. “The Messiah!”
Just as we are getting ready to break into applause, Jesus throws us a curve ball. “He strictly forbade them to tell this to anyone.”
Pope Tells Pilgrims: Selfish Living Leads to Slavery and Death
As he met with thousands of pro-life advocates from around the globe, Pope Francis stressed that the Gospel is the “way to freedom and life,” but lifestyles that are “dictated by selfishness” lead to slavery and death.
“Dear brothers and sisters,” the Pope urged, “let us look to God as the God of Life; let us look to his law, to the Gospel message, as the way to freedom and life. The living God sets us free.”
Audience: Unity in the Body of Christ
The Church is not an charitable, cultural or political association, but a living Body, that walks and acts in history. And this Body has a head, Jesus, who guides, nourishes and supports it”, said Pope Francis Wednesday as he continued his series of lessons on the Creed during his General Audience.
A boiling summer sun brought temperatures to a high of 29°s, but despite this St Peter’s square was packed by tens of thousands of pilgrims. In his catechesis he told them we must remain united to the Church lamenting the divisions among Christians which he says ‘wounds this Body’. He said differences in the Church can enrich us and help us grow, but “a Body must be united to survive.”
The Littlest Suffering Souls III: Brendan Kelly of Great Falls
Two weeks before his death at sixteen, Brendan Kelly’s aunt helped him into bed one night. Owing to massive steroid treatments to fight the ravages of chemo, and being a big boy anyway, he weighed more than 200 pounds. So it was difficult getting him to bed, made more difficult because large sores covered his whole body.