How providential we have the gospel reading this weekend about paying taxes to Caesar. We are a little more than two weeks away from the elections, and we have had the confirmation hearings for Amy Coney Barrett, nominee to be a Supreme Court justice. Just what is the relationship between the state government (by state we simply mean secular) and the Church? A little background this week on this concept.
Mountains, weddings and feasts. These images are part of the first reading and the gospel. What do these images mean when we see them? For there are certain images that come back to us over and over again in the bible, and it is important for us to listen attentively to what they mean. Getting some background on the role of mountains when they appear in the bible, and on how wedding feasts worked out help us to apply the invitation to our own lives. Just as the king invites guests to his wedding, so too does God invite us to be a part of his kingdom. But when we say yes to Jesus, there is no going back.
At the root of the dissatisfaction in this Sunday’s gospel is envy. Even though they are not treated unfairly, the first workers of the day complain because they are envious of the generosity of the Lord. And if the love of God were finite or limited, they would have a point. But, God’s love is infinite, and we cannot be more fulfilled if we are saved. God’s love is without limit, and so everyone can be loved in fullness by God.
There are certain numbers in the bible that come up again and again. Ever wonder why? What is the meaning of certain numbers? Today we encounter in Peter’s question, and in Jesus’ answer the meaning of the word seven (and ten) in the bible. What exactly does Jesus mean in his answer? And what does it have to do with Genesis 4:24?
How readily do we look for the holy presence of God in our daily lives? How well do we seek to know Jesus? For if we do not know Jesus well, we might not recognize the ways he comes into our lives. Be watchful for Jesus.
The pathway to happiness and fulfillment is counter intuitive. To find ourselves, we must lose ourselves. It is in giving that we receive. It is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
In the first reading from Mass today we encounter the beginning of the ministry of deacons. But just what is a deacon? The Friar takes a look at this vocation, explains its meaning and discusses what deacons are called by God to do.
How can you be generous? That is the message of hope we are called to have as people of faith. How can your generosity be increased? How can your example of sacrifice help others to see how the faith produces calm and peace? How is it we can increase our faith in God, who is far stronger than any other created thing, even a coronavirus. All the readings provide us examples of what hope in God brings. Pray for the virtue of hope, and ask God to give you and witness to that peace that comes from deep faith in him.
Every Second Sunday of Lent we hear an account of the Transfiguration. Why is this?
The gospel this Sunday is about the temptation of Jesus. Jesus is led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted. But why? Why was it the Spirit led Jesus into the desert? Saint Thomas Aquinas provides four reasons, and we have much we can learn from today’s Gospel.