Sunday, September 08, 2019
MONDAY, 23rd Week in Ordinary Time
September 9, 2019 – MONDAY, 23rd Week in Ordinary Time
St. Peter Claver, Priest and Missionary
Col 1: 24 – 2: 3 / Lk 6: 6 – 11
Born near Barcelona, St. Peter Claver (1560 – 1654) was a Jesuit missionary priest who spent life in service to African slaves in Cartagena. He was encouraged to go to the foreign missions by Jesuit lay brother St. Alphonsus Rodriguez (1533 – 1617)
FROM THE 1ST READING: Col 1: 24 – 25, 28 – 29
I rejoice when I suffer for you; I complete in my own flesh what is lacking in the sufferings of Christ for the sake of his body, which is the Church. For I am serving the Church since God entrusted to me the ministry of bringing into effect his design for you. . . .
This Christ we preach. We warn and teach everyone true wisdom, aiming to make everyone perfect in Christ. For this cause I labor and struggle with the energy of Christ working powerfully in me.
GOSPEL READING: Lk 6: 6 – 11
On another Sabbath Jesus entered the synagogue and began teaching. There was a man with a paralyzed right hand and the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees watched him: Would Jesus heal the man on the Sabbath? If he did, they could accuse him.
But Jesus knew their thoughts and said to the man, "Get up and stand in the middle." Then he spoke to them, "I want to ask you: what is allowed by the Law on the Sabbath, to do good or to harm, to save life or destroy it?" And Jesus looked around at them all.
Then he said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He stretched it out and his hand was restored, becoming as whole as the other. But they were furious and began to discuss with one another how they could deal with Jesus.
In the first reading St. Paul explains his task and mission to preach Christ and his Good News. He also explains how he shares in Christ's suffering for the sake of the Church: "I rejoice when I suffer for you; I complete in my own flesh what is lacking in the sufferings of Christ for the sake of his body, which is the Church."
In the Gospel reading we see Christ heal a man with a paralyzed right arm on the Sabbath to the indignation of the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law. Jesus enrages them more when he exposes their hypocrisy, "I want to ask you: what is allowed by the Law on the Sabbath, to do good or to harm, to save life or destroy it?"
Jesus' healing of the man with a paralyzed right arm and the lesson he impresses among the Pharisees on the Sabbath are in fulfillment of his mission as given by the Prophet Isaiah, "to bring good news to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives and new sight to the blind, to free the oppressed and announce the Lord's year of mercy.." (Lk 4: 18 -19)
All of us are called to this same task: are we willing and ready, like St. Paul to do our share? To live our lives according to the Good News is possible only with God's grace.
FINALLY, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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