COC

Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time [a]

Engaging Faith | Fri, Feb 25, 2011

By John Bucki, S.J.

Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time [a]

March 6, 2011

 

Readings

Deuteronomy 11:18, 26-28, 32

Romans 3:21-25, 28

Matthew 7:21-27

 

Calendar

March: Women’s History Month

March 8: International Women’s Day

March 9: Ash Wednesday, Start of Lent

 

Quotes

 

Church has the right, indeed the duty, to proclaim justice on the social, national and international level, and to denounce instances of injustice, when the fundamental rights of people and their very salvation demand it.

1971 Synod, Justice in the World

 

Flagrant inequalities exist in the economic, cultural and political development of the nations: while some regions are heavily industrialized, others are still at the agricultural stage; while some countries enjoy prosperity, others are struggling against starvation; while some peoples have a high standard of culture, others are still engaged in eliminating illiteracy. From all sides there rises a yearning for more justice and a desire for a better guaranteed peace in mutual respect among individuals and peoples.

Pope Paul VI, Apostolic Letter “Call to Action”

 

It is not enough to recall principles, state intentions, point to crying injustice and utter prophetic denunciations; these words will lack real weight unless they are accompanied for each individual by a livelier awareness of personal responsibility and by effective action.

Pope Paul VI, Apostolic Letter “Call to Action”

 

Action on behalf of justice and participation in the transformation of the world fully appear to us as       a constitutive dimension of the preaching of the Gospel, or, in other words, of the Church's mission for the redemption of the human race and its liberation from every oppressive situation.

1971 Synod, Justice in the World

 

What we would like to do is change the world­ - to make it a little simpler for people to feed, clothe, and shelter themselves as God intended for them to do. And we can change the world: we can work for the oasis, the little cell of joy and peace in a harried world.  We can throw our pebble in the pond and be confident that its ever widening circle will reach around the world.

Dorothy Day

 

Thoughts for your consideration

 

Genuine faith, religion, and spirituality are more than sentimental feelings or ideological statements. Faith, religion, and spirituality are transformative. Faith leads to action.  Religion involves doing.  Spirituality is reflected in behavior.

 

Our faith, our religion, and our spirituality all call us to action on behalf of others.

They all call us into healthy human relationship or community.

Healthy relationship involves learning from one another, service for and with others and a commitment to create a world of peace and justice for all.  Healthy relationship involves working to create structures and institutions that support this peace and justice and leave no one out.

 

The 1971 Synod of Bishops in Justice in the World put it well:

Action on behalf of justice and participation in the transformation of the world fully appear to us as a constitutive dimension of the preaching of the Gospel, or, in other words, of the church's mission for the redemption of the human race and its liberation from every oppressive situation.

 

Moses told the people: “Take these words of mine into your heart and soul.”

 

Jesus said to his disciples: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.”

 

 

Questions for Reflection in your Faith Sharing Group

 

How does your local community put faith in practice?

How are its values made real in action?

 

+++++

 

As Lent is about to begin, what do you need to do to put your faith in practice?

What will free you up so as to “Take these words of mine into your heart and soul.”?

 

Actions – Links

 

Feeding America, formerly “Second Harvest” has a monthly online newsletter which can be accessed at http://www.hungeractioncenter.org/newsletters/0211.aspx .  They have information about how proposed federal budget cuts may affect the poor and especially anti-hunger programs.  They also suggest actions for advocacy.  Feeding America supports a network of 206 food banks in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

 

 

“Crazy facts”

 

The latest data from the United States Department of Agriculture shows that more than 49 million Americans experience “food insecurity” each year – that is, they’re not sure where they’ll find their next meal. That staggering number includes nearly 17 million children. http://blog.feedingamerica.org/2010/02/starting-the-conversation-about-hunger-in-america/

 

 

Global food prices continue to rise. The World Bank’s food price index increased by 15% between October 2010 and January 2011 and is only 3% below its 2008 peak. The last six months have seen sharp increases in the global prices of wheat, maize, sugar and edible oils, with a relatively smaller increase in rice prices. Higher global wheat prices have fed into significant increases in local wheat prices in many countries. …  Estimates of those who fall into, and move out of, poverty as a result of price rises since June 2010 show there is a net increase in extreme poverty of about 44 million people in low- and middle-income countries.

http://www.worldbank.org/foodcrisis/food_price_watch_report_feb2011.html

 

Prayers of Intercession

 

Response: Holy Spirit, help us listen and help us become doers of your word.

We recall the poor of the world, especially those without enough food this day.

We recall the victims of the recent earthquake in New Zealand. .

We remember the people of Afghanistan and Pakistan who are caught up in ongoing war and violence.

We remember the people on Libya and other nations that are struggling for political freedom and change.

We remember our planet earth which is so stressed by overuse and abuse.

We keep in mind those in prison and jail.

We keep in mind those in hospitals and nursing homes.

We look into our own hearts and at our own action and inaction.

 

 

Prayer

           

Mother -- Father God:  Help us to hear the word and put it into practice.

            Let us hear again the challenge of the great prophets.

                        Let us do what is right and love with enthusiasm.

 

Sophia – Wisdom: Help us to hear the word and put it into practice.

            Help us to discern the way of peace.

                        Help us to discern the way of right action.

 

God of heaven and earth: Help us to hear the word and put it into practice.

            Let us hear again the stories of our ancestors in faith.

                        Let us create new stories today – stories of faith in action.

 

God of peace and justice: Help us to hear the word and put it into practice.

            Help us to listen to the world and the cries of those in need.

                        Help us to respond in solidarity with all those in need.

 

Holy Spirit: Help us to hear the word and put it into practice.

            Fill us with an enthusiasm and joy for what is right and good.

                        Fill us with virtue that we might do what is good for all.