Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The experts in the law and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat. Therefore pay attention to what they tell you and do it. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they teach. They tie up heavy loads, hard to carry, and put them on men’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing even to lift a finger to move them.
— Matt 23: 1-4
The fierce words of Jesus addressed to the Pharisees of His day stretch across the bands of time. Today they are directed not only to fallen televangelists but to each of us. We miss Jesus’ point entirely when we use His words as weapons against others. They are to be taken personally by each of us. This is the form and shape of Christian Pharisaism in our time. Hypocrisy is not the prerogative of people in high places. The most impoverished among us is capable of it. Hypocrisy is the natural expression of what is meanest in us all. Continue reading “Desert Day 44: Like The Pharisee …”
What does the Bible say about helping refugees, migrants and foreigners? In this video, James Martin, S.J., explains the Biblical basis for welcoming the stranger.
Continue reading “What Does The Bible Say About Welcoming Refugees And Migrants …”
… It feels impolite to speak of the dynamite of the Incarnation; it seems so alien to the holiday mood, such the vibe to block from the room. But merriment about glad tidings should not divorce our memory from the trauma surrounding Christ’s birth. Tempted to reduce Christmas to sugary exhortations about love and goodwill, we need only dip our thoughts into Scripture. Continue reading “The Light Came, But Not Without a Fight …”
Every major spiritual revelation known to humankind, in fact, is based on the bedrock of hope. Hinduism sees life as the gathering of graces that leads, eventually, to the eternal dissolution of each of us into the energy that is God. Buddhism teaches the path to Enlightenment, to the end of suffering. Continue reading “Transformed by Hope …”
May God who created you from love and for love
heal and bless you –
embracing you in the tenderest of mercies.
May Jesus who died for you
lift the burden of pain from your heart –
and take it to himself –
for he is gentle – and humble of heart –
and desires rest for your soul.
May the Spirit of consolation deep within you
awaken anew –
to comfort you and strengthen you;
to restore your trust
and renew your love.
May Mary, the mother of Jesus,
whose own heart was pierced as with a sword,
enfold your prayers for healing in her own.
And may you find peace in the love of the People of God –
forgiving its brokenness –
understanding its frailty –
and trusting its deep desire to be reconciled with you –
so that you, God’s precious son/ daughter –
can once again find in the its midst
a people and a place that you can call home.