Celebrate Sunday Mass - 7.25.21

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7/25/2021 (4 months ago)

By Deacon Keith Fournier

JULY 25, 2021 -- 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time 

Dear Catholic Online Community and Catholic Online School students...

I AM HAPPY TO OFFER EACH OF YOU AN INVITATION TO SUNDAY MASS ON THE SEVENTEENTH SUNDAY in OORDINARY TIME in the Catholic Diocese of Tyler. The response to offering these liturgies online has been overwhelming. The readings, as always, offer so much for us to reflect on. It is helpful to pray through them and reflect upon them before we assist at Holy Mass.

In our first reading on this Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary time, we have the wonderful account of the multiplication of the bread and the ears of grain. There were only twenty loaves and some grain. But, Elisha, the prophet, was a man of faith. And he knew what the Lord could do. He had succeeded Elijah in the prophetic ministry and inherited a "double portion" of his teachers' spirit (2 Kings 2:9-12)

So, with living faith, and a prophetic promise "They shall eat and have some left", the Lord worked a miraculous sign through him, feeding 100 men. 

This miracle, the multiplication of loaves, was also prophetic, as we will see in our Gospel passage appointed for today. St Johns account of the multiplication of the loaves and fish by Jesus Christ, the Messiah and Lord. We join David the Psalmist in our response singing or saying, "The hand of the Lord feeds us; He answers all our needs". 

Do we believe this? Do we live our lives reflecting that kind of trust and living faith in God's provision? When we do, we too will see miracles.

St. Paul, in our second reading exhorts the Ephesians to "...live in a manner worthy of the call they have received." Of course, those words, filled with the Holy Spirit are addressed to us as well. Are we living a life worthy of the call the Lord has given to us? Ordinary Time in the Liturgical Calendar is an opportunity to examine ourselves and our way of living our vocation as Christians. 

Ordinary time presents us with an opportunity to consider once again the fact that living the Christian vocation calls us to meet the Lord in the real stuff of daily life. He is already there, walking before us and beckoning us to follow Him.

We are the ones now called to reveal the Risen Lord Jesus Christ to the world of our own age, an age that has lost its way, inebriated on self-indulgence, and blinded by the emptiness and arrogance of power. How we treat one another in the Church, the Mystical Body of Christ matters greatly. 

How are doing? Does our life together, in the Church, bear witness to the World that Jesus Christ is Lord?

The Gospel appointed for today's Holy Mass is St Johns account of the multiplication of the loaves and fish. A wonderful miracle. The first reading foreshadowed it. Johns Gospel was the last to be written. Hence, it is the most theologically deep in many ways. 

St. John the theologian uses the little boy to demonstrate the condition of the heart required to enter more deeply into understanding this part of the meaning of the miracle of the loaves. As a child, he held nothing back. He gave his loaves and fish to the Lord without hesitation. He simply gave what he had. Will we? 

Gather the Fragments, live the miracle. 

St Jose Maria Escriva wrote these insightful words concerning the miracle of the loaves and the fish in "The Forge": 

"Our Lord wants to make us co-redeemers with him.  That is why to help us understand this marvel, he moves the evangelists to tell us of so many great wonders. He could have produced bread from anything... but he doesn't! He looks for human co-operation: he needs a child, a boy, a few pieces of bread and some fish.  He needs you and me: and he is God! This should move us to be generous in our corresponding with his grace.

"If you help him, even with a trifle, as the Apostles did, He is ready to work miracles; to multiply the bread, to reform wills, to give light to the most benighted minds, to enable those who have never been upright to be so, with an extraordinary grace.  All this he will do... and more if you will help him with what you have. (The Forge 674,675)

We are invited to learn to understand the spiritual challenge of understanding the loaves today. Living faith can open our eyes to see all of life differently and participate in the continuing miracle. Let's give the Lord all that we have!

May the Lord Jesus Christ be the center of your life and the heart of your home. Have a wonderful Lords Day.

Deacon Keith Fournier
Dean of Catholic Online School

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