Engaging Faith | Tue, May 23, 2017
Seventh Sunday of Easter [a]
May 28, 2017 (in many parts of the world, May 28, 2017 is the Feast of the Ascension)
Acts 1: 12-14
1 Peter 4:13-16
John 17: 1-11a
May 26: Ramadan 2017 in United States will begin in the evening
May 29: Memorial Day in the United States
May 29: International Day of UN Peacekeepers
May 31: World No-Tobacco Day
June 4: Pentecost
June: World Refugee Awareness Day
June: Torture Awareness Month
I ask everyone with political responsibility to remember two things: human dignity and the common good.
-Pope Francis @ Pontifex May 1, 2014
…. recognition of the transcendent value of every man and woman favors conversion of heart, which then leads to a commitment to resist violence, terrorism and war, and to promote justice and peace.
-Benedict XVI, Address at the UN, April 18, 2008
Our commitment to the Catholic social mission must be rooted in and strengthened by our spiritual lives. In our relationship with God we experience the conversion of heart that is necessary to truly love one another as God has loved us.
-U.S. Bishops, Sharing Catholic Social Teaching: Challenges and Directions
Solidarity is not a feeling of vague compassion or shallow distress at the misfortunes of so many people, both near and far. On the contrary, it is a firm and persevering determination to commit oneself to the common good, that is to say, to the good of all and of each individual because we are all really responsible for all.
John Paul II, Sollicitudo Rei Socialis, 38
Because God is the creator, redeemer, lover of the world, God’s own honor is at stake in human happiness. Wherever human beings are violated, diminished, or have their life drained away, God’s glory is dimmed and dishonored. Wherever human beings are quickened to fuller and richer life, God’s glory is enhanced. A community of justice and peace (thriving among human beings) and God’s glory increase in direct and not inverse proportion.
-Elizabeth Johnson CSJ, She Who Is
Creation is not some possession that we can lord over for our own pleasure; nor, even less, is it the property of only some people, the few: creation is a gift, it is the marvelous gift that God has given us, so that we will take care of it and harness it for the benefit of all, always with great respect and gratitude.
-Pope Francis, Audience on May 21, 2014
Thoughts for Your Consideration
- In the Acts of the Apostles, the early community “devoted themselves with one accord to prayer.”
- In the second reading, Peter reminds us of the ideal solidarity with Christ and with one another, even to the point of solidarity with the suffering of Christ.
- In the gospel, the high priestly prayer expresses Jesus’ great desire that the whole community be one, even as it is “in the world.”
In our complex global world, we are challenged to live with this same sense of unity with one another, this same commitment to the common good, this same solidarity with those who suffer or are in need. In the midst of ethnic and political strife, we are invited to put into practice the “call to solidarity.” In the midst of income and asset inequalities, we are called to share what we have and look beyond our self-interest. In the midst war, we are called to work for peace. In the midst of injustice, we are called to discern the paths to justice for all. [After all Jesus prays for “eternal life to all.”]
The Christian vision challenges any rugged individualism that fails to consider how our actions affect others, any greed that creates an economic system that locks people into poverty while others are excessively wealthy, any set of ethical values that excludes others from their human and economic rights, and any violence that fails to respect the dignity of other people.
To read the rest of this reflection from John Bucki, S.J., as well as his reflection questions, faith in action links, prayers of intercession, and prayer meditations, become a member of Education for Justice: http://www.coc.org/EFJ-New.
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