The key theme that runs through today's readings is one of love. It is the new commandment that Christ left behind at the last supper, inviting his disciples to love one another just as he loved them. In the first reading David shows how a Christian should respond to the challenge God has given him by not killing the enemy. In the second reading we hear Paul telling the Corinthian community Christ the new Adam is different from the old Adam. He invites his community to grow into the image of the heavenly Father by continuously transforming themselves. Through his committed love he brought new life to people. In the gospel Jesus speaks about loving their enemies and sincerely praying for their persecutors which shows that only a religious motivation could be a root of such a notable behavior. He tells them that the reason for this is the Father in heaven who is caring, loving and merciful. He is kind to those ungrateful and wicked.READ MORE
Today's gospel contains what we call the Eight Beatitudes, or the core Attitudes of a Christian. It contains a recipe for living, and for happiness. It outlines a series of choices, and it gives us a programme for living. Today, and for the next two weeks, our Gospel reading is that teaching of Jesus which, in St. Matthew's Gospel, we know as the Sermon on the Mount. The two evangelists present essentially the same material, but there are some minor differences. Most notable, perhaps, is the setting for the sermon. While St. Matthew tells us that Jesus went up the mountain to teach, St. Luke depicts Jesus descending the mountain after prayer to teach on the level ground. For this reason St. Luke's version of Jesus' teaching is often called the Sermon on the Plain.READ MORE
Today's readings tell us of the experience of divine presence and the human response of the individual. We have here three important persons mentioned in the Bible: Isaiah, Paul and Peter. All the three persons were most grateful to God for having chosen them and they did make a great effort to answer the calling to the best of their capabilities. This is not to say that they were all perfect persons. Prophet Isaiah wished at times that God would have chosen someone else because the people would not listen to him. He viewed himself as a great sinner among sinners, not worthy of being in the presence of Yahweh. St. Paul started on the wrong track by persecuting the Christians.READ MORE
I have been witnessing some very interesting postures and reception of the Holy Eucharist at Communion time and it is quite disturbing.
The Roman Missal is very clear on how we the faithful are to receive our Lord at Holy Communion. The Communion Procession is a profoundly religious action and it tells us something about the way in which we should participate in this procession. "We are the Body of Christ, moving forward to receive the Christ who makes us one with himself and with one another. Our procession should move with dignity; our bearing should be that of those who know they have been redeemed by Christ and are coming to receive their God!" In the United States, the body of Bishops determined that Communion should be received standing, and that a bow is the act of reverence made by those receiving.READ MORE