Sunday, June 9, 2013

Today's Mass Readings - Sunday, June 9, 2013 with Reflection

1ST READING - 1 Kings 17:17-24
17 Elijah went to Zarephath of Sidon to the house of a widow. The son of the mistress of the house fell sick, and his sickness grew more severe until he stopped breathing. 18 So she said to Elijah, “Why have you done this to me, O man of God? Have you come to me to call attention to my guilt and to kill my son?” 19 Elijah said to her, “Give me your son.” Taking him from her lap, he carried him to the upper room where he was staying, and put him on his bed. 20 Elijah called out to the Lord: “O Lord, my God, will you afflict even the widow with whom I am staying by killing her son?” 21 Then he stretched himself out upon the child three times and called out to the Lord: “O Lord, my God, let the life breath return to the body of this child.” 22 The Lord heard the prayer of Elijah; the life breath returned to the child’s body and he revived. 23Taking the child, Elijah brought him down into the house from the upper room and gave him to his mother. Elijah said to her, “See! Your son is alive.” 24 The woman replied to Elijah, “Now indeed I know that you are a man of God. The word of the Lord comes truly from your mouth.”
P S A L M - Psalm 30:2, 4, 5-6, 11, 12, 13
R: I will praise you, Lord, for You have rescued me.
1 [2] I will extol you, O Lord, for you drew me clear and did not let my enemies rejoice over me. 3 [4] O Lord, you brought me up from the nether world; you preserved me from among those going down into the pit. (R) 4 [5] Sing praise to the Lord, you his faithful ones, and give thanks to his holy name. 5 [6] For his anger lasts but a moment; a lifetime, his good will. At nightfall, weeping enters in, but with the dawn, rejoicing. (R) 10 [11] Hear, O Lord, and have pity on me; O Lord, be my helper.”11 [12] You changed my mourning into dancing; 12 [13] O Lord, my God, forever will I give you thanks. (R)
2ND READING - Galatians 1:11-19
11 I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that the gospel preached by me is not of human origin. 12 For I did not receive it from a human being, nor was I taught it, but it came through a revelation of Jesus Christ. 13 For you heard of my former way of life in Judaism, how I persecuted the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it, 14 and progressed in Judaism beyond many of my contemporaries among my race, since I was even more a zealot for my ancestral traditions. 15 But when God, who from my mother’s womb had set me apart and called me through his grace, was pleased 16 to reveal his Son to me, so that I might proclaim him to the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult flesh and blood, 17 nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; rather, I went into Arabia and then returned to Damascus. 18 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to confer with Cephas and remained with him for fifteen days. 19 But I did not see any other of the apostles, only James the brother of the Lord.
A great prophet has arisen in our midst. God has visited his people.
Luke 7:11-17
11 Jesus journeyed to a city called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd accompanied him. 12 As he drew near to the gate of the city, a man who had died was being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. A large crowd from the city was with her. 13 When the Lord saw her, he was moved with pity for her and said to her, “Do not weep.” 14 He stepped forward and touched the coffin; at this the bearers halted, and he said, “Young man, I tell you, arise!” 15 The dead man sat up and began to speak, and Jesus gave him to his mother. 16 Fear seized them all, and they glorified God, exclaiming, “A great prophet has arisen in our midst,” and “God has visited his people.” 17 This report about him spread through the whole of Judea and in all the surrounding region.



One of the the so-called “ordinary” magisterial teachings of the Pope is called a motu proprio, which means a document that is written and promulgated by the Holy Father’s “own volition” of sorts, or moved entirely by his own personal decision. Lower in terms of authority to an apostolicexhortation, and definitely lower than an encyclical, a teaching issued motu proprio nevertheless deserves not an assent of faith, but a simple religious assent. In plain language, we Catholics also need to pay attention to what the Pope is saying through a motu proprio.

       Today’s Gospel refers to a similar motu proprio on the part of the Lord. Moved by compassion, Jesus did something that the First Reading prefigured — that is, raise a deceased young man to life, almost exactly like the prophet Elijah did. Gratuitously, graciously, freely, the Lord “had pity” on the woman, and told her, “Don’t cry!” He then proceeded to do the unthinkable and the unexpected — command the young man to “get up.” The woman had, by then, become a non-entity, among the poorest of the poor — a widow, who because of the death of her only son then, had become an instant pariah, condemned to live on the fringes of society. But the Lord took pity on her!

       My heart today goes out to all those who have lost everyone and everything in life. Early last year, just a few weeks after the typhoon Sendong tragedy that leveled parts of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan cities in Northern Mindanao, I led a group of young priests to the sites. Many of us were close to tears. Thousands lost loved ones, belongings, sources of livelihood, an otherwise bright future, and all. There are no words to express what I felt.

       The Lord, too, was obviously moved, perhaps even to tears. But He did something more than shed tears. He did a motu proprio — a miraculous merciful and healing act. He took pity and acted accordingly. What about us? Fr. Chito Dimaranan, SDB
REFLECTION QUESTION: When moved to do something marvelous for God and others, do we act on our own volition?
Grant me courage, dear God, to act as Your Spirit leads me.

St. Ephrem, deacon and doctor of the Church, pray for us.

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