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Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time : July 27, 2014

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew 13: 44 – 52

Gospel Reading

Jesus said to his disciples: “The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in a field, which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls. When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells all that he has and buys it. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net thrown into the sea, which collects fish of every kind. When it is full they haul it ashore and sit down to put what is good into buckets. What is bad they throw away. Thus it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth. Do you understand all these things?”

They answered, “Yes.” And he replied, “Then every scribe* who has been instructed in the kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.” *The Church of Matthew had leaders among whom were a group designated as “scribes” (see 23:34). Like the scribes of Israel, they were teachers. It is the Twelve and these later counterparts to whom this verse applies.

Brief Commentary

Today’s text includes three more parables presented by Jesus to help the disciples understand the kingdom of heaven: the hidden treasure, the merchant in search of fine pearls, and the net that caught fish of every kind. Each of the objects, the thing found or caught, is something of great value. In the first two parables, Jesus tries to impress upon the disciples that the person who finds and understands the value of the kingdom of heaven gives up whatever is needed in order to obtain it. The third parable reminds us of the weeds and the wheat and stresses the ultimate exclusion of evil persons from the kingdom. The parables’ discourse (13:51-53) concludes expressing the goal of the evangelist: to connect Christ with the Old Testament and to see his life in the light of the Old Testament tradition. Anyone who understands this will be able to bring together the old and the new.

Today’s reading offers three significant messages:

  • The new reign of God is the greatest treasure one can possess.
  • Jesus’ probing question: “Do you understand all these things?” is also meant for us today.
  • God’s kingdom invites us to desire more than material satisfactions.

For our shared or personal reflection:

After a brief pause for silent reflection share your answers, ideas or feelings.

  • Where is my treasure? Where do I invest most of my energies and time?
  • Am I willing to live more simply so others can simply live? Explain.

Suggested readings:
Catechism of the Catholic Church paragraphs 542-546; 671-672; 1034; 328-333.

PRAISE FOR GOD’S GIFT OF NATURE

Praised be my Lord for brother wind and for the air and clouds and fair and every kind of weather, by the which Thou givest to Thy creatures nourishment.

Praised be my Lord for sister water, the which is greatly helpful and humble and precious and pure.Praised be my Lord for brother fire, by the which Thou lightest up the dark.

And fair is he and gay and mighty and strong. Praised be my Lord for our sister, mother earth, the which sustains and keeps us and brings forth diverse fruits with grass and flowers bright.

St. Francis of Assisi

All things work for good for those who love God.

— Romans 8:28a

IT IS EASY TO BE PLEASANT

It is easy to be pleasant when life flows by like a song.
But the man worthwhile is the one who will smile, when everything goes dead wrong.
For the test of the heart is trouble, and it always comes with years.
And the smile that is worth the praises of earth, is the smile that shines thru tears.


2014 ARCHBISHOP’S CHARITY AND DEVELOPMENT DRIVE

Click on image above to view the video

AUGUST 3rd , THE SECOND COLLECTION IS FOR THE SEMINARIANS

The education of young men for the priesthood is expensive. Every year the Archbishop appeals to our generosity to help and support the seminarians.

Please be generous in the Second Collection the next Sunday August 3rd .At the entrance of the church you can find special envelopes for this collection.

RISKS

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool.
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach out for another is to risk involvement.
To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self.

To place your ideas, your dreams, before a crowd is to risk their loss.
To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying. To hope is to risk despair.
To try is to risk failure.

But risk must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.
They may avoid suffering and sorrow, but they cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love, live.
Only the person who risks is free.

Anonymous

BE GLAD, BE GRATEFUL

Be glad that your life has been
full and complete,
Be glad that you’ve tasted the bitter and sweet.
Be glad that you’ve walked in sunshine and rain.
Be glad that you’ve felt both pleasure and pain.
Be glad for the comfort that you’ve found in prayer...
Be glad for God’s blessings...
His love and His care.

-Helen Steiner Rice

SERVICE AND JOY

“I slept and dreamed that life was joy.
I woke and saw that life was but service.
I served and understood that service was joy”

Rabindranath Tagore

ALL IS POSSIBLE WITH LOVE

Intelligence without love makes you malevolent.
Justice without love makes you relentless.
Diplomacy without love makes you a hypocrite.
Success without love makes you arrogant.
Wealth without love makes you greedy.
Docility without love makes you servile.
Poverty without love makes you self-righteous.
Beauty without love makes you superficial.
Truth without love makes you offensive.
Work without love makes you a slave.
Simplicity without love makes you vain.
Law without love makes you inflexible.
Faith without love makes you a fanatic.
The cross without love becomes torture.
Life without love makes no sense.
May we comprehend all this with Love.

Humor Corner

At Sunday School they were teaching how God created everything, including human beings. Little Johnny seemed especially intent when they told him how Eve was created out of one of Adam’s ribs…

Later in the week his mother noticed him lying down as though he were ill, and she said, “Johnny, what is the matter?”

Little Johnny responded, “I have pain in my side. I think I’m going to have a wife.”