Engaging Faith | Tue, Feb 2, 2016
Fifth Sunday of Ordinary Time [c]
February 7, 2016
Isaiah 6:1-2, 3-8
1 Corinthians 15:1-11 or 1 Corinthians 15:3-8,11
February 7: National Day of Prayer for the African American Family
February 7: Super Bowl Sunday
February 8: Chinese New Year
February 9: Mardi Gras
February 10: Ash Wednesday, the start of Lent
February 11: World Day of the Sick
February 11: International Day of Women and Girls in Science
February 14: Valentine’s Day
Now the Bride of Christ wishes to use the medicine of mercy rather than taking up arms of severity… The Catholic Church, as she holds high the torch of Catholic truth at this Ecumenical Council, wants to show herself a loving mother to all; patient, kind, moved by compassion and goodness toward her separated children.
-Pope John XXIII, at the opening of Vatican II
No peace without justice, no justice without forgiveness.
-John Paul II, 2002 World Day of Peace Message
What is being looked for is not simply the solution to one problem, but an entire shift of worldview away from patterns of dominance toward mutually enhancing relationships.
-Elizabeth Johnson, CSJ, She Who Is
Racism is a sin; a sin that divides the human family, blots out the image of God among specific members of that family, and violates the fundamental human dignity of those called to be children of the same Father. Racism is the sin that says some human beings are inherently superior and others essentially inferior because of races.
The structures of our society are subtly racist. Perhaps no single individual is to blame. The sinfulness is often anonymous but nonetheless real. The sin is social in nature in that each of us, in varying degrees, is responsible. All of us in some measure are accomplices. As our recent pastoral letter on moral values states: "The absence of personal fault for an evil does not absolve one of all responsibility. We must seek to resist and undo injustices we have not ceased, least we become bystanders who tacitly endorse evil and so share in guilt in it."
-US Bishops, Brothers and Sisters To Us
Do not rob the poor because they are poor,
or crush the afflicted at the gate;
for the Lord pleads their cause
and despoils of life those who despoil them.
Thoughts for Your Consideration
1. The scriptures invite us to reflect on sin and our unworthiness before God. At the same time we see that both Isaiah and Peter experience a profound and powerful reconciliation experience after their deep experience of unworthiness. From a deep sense of sin flows a deep sense of God’s love and acceptance and then a powerful call to share that message in word and in action. “Do not be afraid.” The Mercy of God is available.