A Lectio Divina Approach to the Sunday and Weekday Liturgy

 

BREAKING THE BREAD OF THE WORD (Series 10, n.32)

WEEK 13 IN ORDINARY TIME: July 1-7, 2012 ***

 

(N.B. The pastoral tool BREAKING THE BREAD OF THE WORD: A LECTIO DIVINA APPROACH TO THE SUNDAY LITURGY includes a prayerful study of the Sunday liturgy of Year B from three perspectives. For reflections on the Sunday liturgy based on the Gospel reading, please scroll up to the “ARCHIVES” above and open Series 1. For reflections based on the Old Testament reading, open Series 4. For reflections based on the Second Reading, open Series 7. Please go to Series 10 for the back issues of the Weekday Lectio.

 

Below is a LECTIO DIVINA APPROACH TO THE SUNDAY - WEEKDAY LITURGY: July 1-7, 2012. The following reflections are based on the weekday liturgy’s Gospel reading.)

 

***

 

July 1, 2012: 13th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

“JESUS SAVIOR: He Heals the Sick and Raises the Dead”

 

BIBLE READINGS

Wis 1:13-15; 2:23-24 // II Cor 8:7,9,13-15  // Mk 5:21-43

 

 

I. BIBLICO-LITURGICAL REFLECTIONS: A Pastoral Tool for the LECTIO

 

Today’s Old Testament Reading (Wis 1:13-15; 2:23-24) affirms that God wills life not death. Death is not his invention, nor does God rejoice in the destruction of the living. According to the Book of Wisdom, when God created us, he did not intend for us to die, for he made us like himself. But it is the Devil’s jealousy that brought death into the world. Death therefore is a consequence of sin. Physical death, which is an end to earthly life, results from the greater “death” that issued when humankind negated God’s love. Spiritual death, which is doubly unfortunate, ruptures our intimate and filial relationship with God.

 

We give thanks to God who in his kindness wills to save us. He offers us the unmerited gift of eternal salvation through his beloved Son Jesus Christ. The human situation of sin and our experience of weakness and “death” are thus radically undone by the paschal mystery of Christ’s passion, death and resurrection. Through God’s justice, embodied in the person of Jesus, the fullness of life and filial communion with God are forever restored as kindly gifts to us. Indeed, God’s gracious will is to lead us to life!

 

Today’s Gospel reading focuses on the healing acts of Jesus Christ. He accomplishes the Father’s benevolent plan to lead us to the fullness of life. The biblical scholar Eugene Maly comments: “Every day is special, a time in which unique gifts from God are always being celebrated. One of these gifts is life. While this includes our physical life, expressed in our breathing and moving about, it is also something more than that. It is a sharing in God’s own divine life. It is a symbiosis, a living with God … It is a full life, joy-filled and God-entrusted. And that kind of life is what God’s action among us is all about … Obviously not all men and women have this life. They have either a deficiency in their physical life because of some sickness or malady, and this is terminated with physical death. Or they lack God’s life; they have deliberately rejected his grace. This is a death more terrifying than the others. God’s will is for life, which was abundantly manifested in his Son’s coming that we might have it to the full … The Gospel reading is a glorious celebration of life. It tells of the restoration of the fullness of life to a hemorrhaging woman and to a young dying girl. To both, Jesus brings life and brings it gladly.”

 

The series on “Mysterious Healings” that is found in GUIDEPOSTS magazine is very inspiring. In her story, Jan LaRosa shares a tremendous experience of personal healing (cf. GUIDEPOSTS, May 2006, p. 67-70). At 8:04 A.M. on an autumn day in October, while herding her kids off to school, she received an urgent call from her doctor informing her that an MRI test showed an aneurysm at the base of her skull. An aneurysm is a weak spot in the artery. The artery wall stretches like a balloon until it bursts, and the patient bleeds to death internally. Her neurosurgeon scheduled a head and neck angiogram to get a better view. Jan was devastated and wept bitterly, feeling abandoned by God. Her 75-year-old mother herself died of an aneurysm that burst during surgery. She lost gallons of blood before dying. While taking a bubble bath the next day, Jan’s eye was caught by a single bubble rising through the air. She thought, Is that maybe how God wants us to live? Yes, God was the same at 8:03, before the doctor called. He was the same at 8:04, when I got the news. And he was the same at 8:05. The aneurysm didn’t surprise him, just me. Trust him, Jan. He’s the same even now. See yourself in that bubble. Let go. A few days after the angiogram, the neurologist called: “I’ve been doing this for more than thirty years and I’ve never seen this happen. Jan, you had an aneurysm. Now, you don’t. I have no medical explanation. I can only tell you the word I wrote in your chart and circled: Miracle.

 

 

II. POINTS FOR THE EXAMINATION OF THE HEART: A Pastoral Tool for the MEDITATIO 

 

How do we respond to the miracles of healing and the Lord’s stance for life that we hear in the Gospel? Are we ready to join Jesus in his ministry against death-dealing forces and in his defense of life?

 

 

III. PRAYING WITH THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the ORATIO

 

O compassionate God,

it is your will to save us.

You offer us the gift of true life.

In your Son Jesus Christ is the healing

that overcomes the power of sin and death.

In the healing of the bleeding woman

and in the raising to life of the twelve-year-old child,

we acknowledge the life-giving strength of Jesus

that is greater than the death-dealing forces of a broken world.

In your obedient Son who saved us on the cross,

we celebrate the power of life.

He lives and reigns,

forever and ever.

Amen.

 

 

IV. INTERIORIZATION OF THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the CONTEMPLATIO

 

The following is the bread of the living Word that will nourish us throughout the day. Please memorize it.

 

            “Please come lay your hands on her that she may get well and live.” (Mk 5:23)

 

 

V. TOWARDS LIFE TRANSFORMATION: A Pastoral Tool for the ACTIO   

 

Pray for the sick and the suffering.  Pray for doctors and caregivers. Alleviate the suffering of the sick, share the healing love of Christ with them and those who need it most. Participate in socio-ecclesial endeavors that preserve and promote the gift of life.

 

 

***

 

July 2, 2012: MONDAY – WEEKDAY (13)

“JESUS SAVIOR: He Calls Us to Follow Him Unconditionally”

 

BIBLE READINGS

Am 2:6-10 // Mt 8:18-22

 

 

I. BIBLICO-LITURGICAL REFLECTIONS: A Pastoral Tool for the LECTIO

(By Sr. Mary Gemma Victorino, PDDM)

 

Jesus' invitation is not a sweet and gentle word; his is a strong challenge: "Foxes have dens, birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head." To another who also wanted to follow him, but set the condition of first "burying his father and mother", he gave an uncompromising reply - "Follow me, and let the dead bury their dead."

 

What does he want to say here? There is nothing more important than following him and announcing his gospel. Such following and preaching asks unconditional detachment, clarity of priorities, total trust and utmost generosity.

 

I experienced this truth early in life. A month after I graduated from college, the persistent call from the Lord Jesus to follow him in consecrated religious life came back to me. When I asked permission from my elderly father to attend the discernment retreat for young ladies contemplating the religious life, he grudgingly gave me permission, coupled with an ultimatum: "Okay, you may go and stay over the weekend but if you don't return consider me dead."

 

I didn't return home after the retreat. Where did I get the strength to disobey my father and face the pain of detachment?  Looking back after all these years, I think it is love for the Master and his Word plus the faith and conviction that his Word carries power and makes things happen.

 

His powerful command “Follow me” gave me the strength to get out of my comfort zone and put my most important relationships in their proper place. Nothing is more important than finding out what is God's will for me, the reason why I have been created in the first place. In being an obedient disciple, that is, a follower of Jesus, I have brought home an important message as well to my beloved father. In fact, after we had reconciled, he confessed and proclaimed, "I think I now understand your mission: when I see you, I remember God."

 

 

II. POINTS FOR THE EXAMINATION OF THE HEART: A Pastoral Tool for the MEDITATIO

 

Do we respond fully to Jesus’ invitation “Follow me” and embrace the unconditional detachment it entails?

 

 

III. PRAYING WITH THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the ORATIO

 

Jesus Lord,

you call us to follow you,

but the cost of discipleship is dear.

Give us the grace to follow you unconditionally

through all the detachment and hardships it entails.

You are the center of our life

and the font of our joy.

You live and reign,

forever and ever.

Amen.

 

 

IV. INTERIORIZATION OF THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the CONTEMPLATIO

 

The following is the bread of the living Word that will nourish us throughout the day. Please memorize it.

 

“Follow me, and let the dead bury their dead.” (cf. Mt 8:22)

 

 

V. TOWARDS LIFE TRANSFORMATION: A Pastoral Tool for the ACTIO

 

Pray that many may respond in public service to God’s call offered in Jesus’ name. Promote vocations to priestly ministry and religious life in the Church today.

 

 

***

 

July 3, 2012: TUESDAY - SAINT THOMAS, apostle

“JESUS SAVIOR: He Helps Us in Our Unbelief”

 

BIBLE READINGS

Eph 2:19-22 // Jn 20:24-29

 

 

I. BIBLICO-LITURGICAL REFLECTIONS: A Pastoral Tool for the LECTIO

(By Sr. Mary Gemma Victorino, PDDM)

 

St. Thomas put conditions to the apostles before he would profess his faith in the Risen Lord. He wanted to touch and see the marks of Jesus' crucifixion and cause of death. And the Risen Lord gave in to his conditions. A week after the first apparition to the apostles, Jesus came again and invited Thomas: "Put your finger here and see my hands, and bring your hand and put it into my side, and do not be unbelieving, but believe." He who wanted to touch Jesus was in turn touched by him and exclaimed: "My Lord and my God!"

 

There is a “doubting Thomas” in each of us. It is but normal that in our life of faith we oftentimes seek confirmation from the Lord, even through our bodily faculties. We like to see, hear, touch, even taste and smell the presence and the goodness of the Lord especially in our “down moments”. Otherwise, we fluctuate and falter in our following of the Master. 

Our Lord, in his goodness, gives in to these 'faith tests' now and then. I had one such experience lately. May 31 was the opening of our new PDDM Apostolic Center in Davao City, Southern Philippines. I came all the way from Manila to participate in this joyful event but, in the rush of preparations, I had a freak accident and suffered a second degree ankle sprain which left me immovable at the moment of the blessing of the center. As I was languishing in my pain and wondering how I could proceed to the new Center and join in the celebration, lo and behold, a poor parishioner who came around in his wheelchair saw me at that very moment. He offered his "special seat" just so I could be where my heart and body wanted to be. I was so touched by the gesture that I couldn't help thinking it was Jesus himself who came to console me.

 

The “doubting” Thomas became a loving, committed apostle of the Lord. In John 11:16, he professed commitment by boldly saying: "Let us also go to die with him." Indeed he followed the Lord and witnessed to his love for him up to the farthest bounds of the earth. In the middle of the VI century, an Egyptian merchant wrote how in southern India he unexpectedly met a group of Christians who informed him that they had been evangelized by the Apostle St. Thomas.

 

II. POINTS FOR THE EXAMINATION OF THE HEART: A Pastoral Tool for the MEDITATIO

Do we act like “doubting Thomas” in low points of our life and challenge the Lord God to give us a reason for belief in him? Do we surrender ourselves more deeply in faith to God and thus merit the beatitude: “Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.”

 

 

III. PRAYING WITH THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the ORATIO

 

Loving Jesus,

at times we are like “doubting” Thomas.

We wallow in doubt and are feckless.

We seek “proofs” that we may believe.

We reject the Good News.

According to human reason

your rising to life seems too good to be true.

Have mercy on us, Lord Jesus!

Look kindly on our wavering faith.

Be kind to us and increase our little faith.

Touch us with the healing power of Easter

so that with the “doubting” Thomas,

we may be able to declare, “My Lord and my God!”

You live and reign,

forever and ever.

Amen.

 

 

IV. INTERIORIZATION OF THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the CONTEMPLATIO

 

The following is the bread of the living Word that will nourish us throughout the day. Please memorize it.

 

“He said to him, ‘My Lord and my God!’”  (Jn 20:28)

 

 

V. TOWARDS LIFE TRANSFORMATION: A Pastoral Tool for the ACTIO

 

Let us renew our faith in the Risen Lord, especially in the “down moments” of our life and say to him, “My Lord and my God!”

 

 

***

 

 

July 4, 2012: WEDNESDAY – WEEKDAY (13)

Mass for Independence Day (USA)

“JESUS SAVIOR: He Calls Us to Fight the Spiritual Warfare”

 

BIBLE READINGS

Am 5:14-15,21-24 // Mt 8:28-34

 

 

I. BIBLICO-LITURGICAL REFLECTIONS: A Pastoral Tool for the LECTIO

(By Phil McCarty, St. Christopher Parish, San Jose, CA-USA)

 

In today’s Gospel we read of Jesus casting out demons - demons so savage that no one dared to approach the demoniacs. I am struck by the fact that the demons immediately recognized Jesus as the Son of God, and they were threatened by Him. In the constant struggle of good versus evil, do we recognize that goodness is a threat to evil? Evil seeks to intimidate goodness, for evil cannot flourish when encountered with goodness.

 

We all encounter evil in one form or another in our daily lives, whether in news reports of violent acts carried out in our community and around the world, or on a more personal level as we are tempted and sin. As faithful Christians we are strengthened by our faith in Jesus Christ, the Son of God. We are called to be a force for good in the face of evil. When we encounter an unjust act, do we stand up for justice? Do we pray that those who choose a path of evil will turn to the Lord, repent, and be saved?  Do we seek the sacrament of reconciliation to cast the demons of sin from our own lives?

 

 

II. POINTS FOR THE EXAMINATION OF THE HEART: A Pastoral Tool for the MEDITATIO

 

Are we aware of the constant struggle of good versus evil? Do we recognize that goodness is a threat to evil? In the spiritual warfare, which side are we on?

 

 

III. PRAYING WITH THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the ORATIO 

(By Phil McCarty, St. Christopher Parish, San Jose, CA-USA)

 

Lord Jesus,

grant us the wisdom and courage

to face the evil we encounter,

whether great or small,

so that the goodness that comes from you

will prevail.

You live and reign,

forever and ever.

Amen.

 

 

IV. INTERIORIZATION OF THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the CONTEMPLATIO

 

The following is the bread of the living Word that will nourish us throughout the day. Please memorize it.

 

“They were so savage.” (cf. Mt 8:28b)

 

 

V. TOWARDS LIFE TRANSFORMATION: A Pastoral Tool for the ACTIO

 

As we celebrate today Independence Day in USA and the conclusion of the Fortnight for Freedom (June 22-July 4, 2012) let us intensify our struggle for true freedom and conquer evil by doing good. Let us promote today and hereafter citizen participation based on moral principles, the defense of life, the needs of the weak, and the pursuit of the common good.

 

***

 

 July 5, 2012: THURSDAY – WEEKDAY (13); SAINT ANTHONY ZACCARIA, priest; SAINT ELIZABETH OF PORTUGAL (USA)

“JESUS SAVIOR: He Has Power to Heal”

 

BIBLE READINGS

Am 7:10-17 // Mt 9:1-8

 

 

I. BIBLICO-LITURGICAL REFLECTIONS: A Pastoral Tool for the LECTIO

(By Mario Domino, St. Christopher Parish, San Jose, CA-USA)

 

Matthew’s description of the healing of the paralytic is not as elaborate as Mark’s (2:1-12). Matthew was more intent on proving Jesus’ messianic fulfillment: the establishment of a new kingdom. In order to do that, Jesus proves that he has power and authority.

 

Matthew shows that Jesus cures not only physical ills but, most significantly, spiritual ills. First, he tells the paralytic that his sins are forgiven him. Then, showing he can discern people’s thoughts, he rebukes the scribes by telling the paralytic to take up his stretcher and walk.

 

In a very convincing manner, he shows us that just as he has the authority to forgive sins, so does he have the power to cure physical ills.

 

From this reading, we should take solace in the restorative powers of Jesus. He can indeed alleviate our physical ills but, more importantly, he does forgive our sins

 

 

II. POINTS FOR THE EXAMINATION OF THE HEART: A Pastoral Tool for the MEDITATIO

 

Do we turn to Jesus Lord and seek healing? Do we help our sick brothers and sisters to come to Jesus and be healed? Do we care for their spiritual-physical needs?

 

 

III. PRAYING WITH THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the ORATIO

 

Loving Jesus,

we turn to you and seek total healing.

Forgive us our sins

and heal our weary soul and broken spirit.

Let our ailing bodies be restored to health,

according to the Father’s compassionate will.

You live and reign,

forever and ever.

Amen.

 

 

IV. INTERIORIZATION OF THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the CONTEMPLATIO

 

The following is the bread of the living Word that will nourish us throughout the day. Please memorize it.

 

“Your sins are forgiven … Rise and walk.” (Mt 9:5)

 

 

V. TOWARDS LIFE TRANSFORMATION: A Pastoral Tool for the ACTIO

 

Pray for a sick person and, if possible, assist that person to have access to the sacraments of reconciliation and the anointing of the sick.

 

 

***

 

 July 6, 2012: FRIDAY – WEEKDAY (13); SAINT MARIA GORETTI, virgin, martyr

“JESUS SAVIOR: He Calls Us to Be Healed”

 

BIBLE READINGS

Am 8:4-6,9-12 // Mt 9:9-13

 

 

I. BIBLICO-LITURGICAL REFLECTIONS: A Pastoral Tool for the LECTIO

(By Rosemary Farrell, St. Christopher Parish, San Jose, CA-USA)

 

This short passage contains the heart of the gospel message, the good news of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is LOVE.  The calling of Matthew to discipleship is of great significance to us all.   As a tax collector, Matthew belonged to a highly disreputable profession and would have been regarded as a social outcast by his fellow Jews.  The prior calling by Jesus of the fishermen, Peter, Andrew, James and John would not have excited public interest, but Matthew was conspicuous because of his despised profession and because of the other outcasts who associated with him.  However, all were called by Jesus in their failings and imperfections, whether these were highly visible and open to public scrutiny, as in the case of Matthew, or not; so too have we all been called in our imperfections, whether they have received public scrutiny, if we happen to be politicians or celebrities, or are known only to ourselves and to God.

Do not be afraid, I am with you.  I have called you each by name.  Come and follow me, I will bring you home; I love you and you are mine.    (David Haas)

 

This is the love of God, calling us just as we are, to be illumined in the light of His love; to be healed and transformed and to become His love to the world.

Even if your sins are scarlet, they can become snow white; even if they are as wool dyed crimson, they can be white as fleece.       (Isaiah 1:18)

 

While dining with Matthew and others who are deemed outcasts, Jesus overhears the skepticism of some of the Pharisees.  He refers them to the scripture that says, “It is kindness that I want, not animal sacrifices” and tells them to go and find out what that means.  Here, Jesus is referring to the words of the prophet Hosea:

What I want from you is plain and clear: I want your constant love, not your animal sacrifices.  I would rather have my people know me than burn offerings to me.  (Hosea 6:6)

 

Hosea was not alone in uttering words like these; we hear them also from his contemporary, fellow prophets Isaiah, Amos, and Micah who completes his exhortation with the famous dictum:

The Lord has told us what is good. What He requires of us is this: to do what is just, to show constant love, and to live in humble fellowship with our God. (Micah 6:8)

 

How do these words resonate with us today?  Kindness, justice, humility and above all, love, we can certainly understand.  We have each been called to know and love the God who is love, and to become His love for others; through this love, all the fruits of the Spirit will grow in us. 

 

Hosea and the other prophets spoke out against animal sacrifice which was still practiced in the Temple in Jerusalem as atonement for sin in Jesus’ time and would continue until the Temple’s destruction in 70 AD.  The Pharisees, who were critical of Jesus dining with tax collectors and sinners, would have zealously performed the Temple sacrifices, but in referencing Hosea Jesus tells them that external duties and observances are inferior to Knowledge of God and the love and compassion that emanates from that Knowledge.  We may be tempted to dismiss the word “sacrifice”, in the prophetical writings that Jesus referred to, as something belonging to the distant past and not applicable to us today as long as we do not allow external religious observances to take precedence over compassion, kindness and mercy towards our brothers and sisters.  Perhaps we should contemplate the suffering of animals in factory farms and the billions of God’s creatures who are still sacrificed each day, no longer as sin offerings but to provide us with food that we do not need; it is easy to survive and be healthy on foods from purely non-animal sources. 

Our task must be to widen the circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.     (Albert Einstein)

 

 

 

II. POINTS FOR THE EXAMINATION OF THE HEART: A Pastoral Tool for the MEDITATIO

 

How does the call and response of the tax collector Matthew impinge on you? Do we put our trust in the Divine Physician who calls us to be healed and transformed and to become his love in the world?

 

 

 

III. PRAYING WITH THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the ORATIO

 

O loving Jesus, Divine Physician,

you did not come to call the righteous but sinners.

You call us just as we are.

Your healing love transforms

that we may become in turn

your healing love to the world.

We love and serve you.

We give you thanks and praise,

now and forever.

Amen.

 

 

IV. INTERIORIZATION OF THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the CONTEMPLATIO

 

            The following is the bread of the living Word that will nourish us throughout the week. Please memorize it.

 

“I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.” (Mt 9:13) 

 

 

V. TOWARDS LIFE TRANSFORMATION: A Pastoral Tool for the ACTIO

 

Meditate on the graciousness of God’s call and of the ongoing response we need to give to him. Through your compassionate ways, let the healing love of Jesus be felt by the persons close to you.

 

 

***

 

 

July 7, 2012: SATURDAY – WEEKDAY (13); COMMON OF BVM ON SATURDAY

“JESUS SAVIOR: He is the New Wine and Bridegroom”

 

BIBLE READINGS

Am 9:11-15 // Mt 9:14-17

 

 

I. BIBLICO-LITURGICAL REFLECTIONS: A Pastoral Tool for the LECTIO

 

John the Baptist’s disciples, probably prompted by the Pharisees, ask Jesus why they and the Pharisees fast, but his disciples do not. Jesus retorts with a rhetorical question: “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them?” In today’s Gospel, Jesus underlines a deeper truth that goes beyond the question of fasting. In the Bible, the marriage feast is a symbol of the kingdom of God. Jesus - the Bridegroom – invites us into the fullness of the kingdom, depicted as a marriage feast. As the Bridegroom of the Church, he brings in the radical newness of the reign of God. The radical newness is depicted in the image of “new wine” in fresh wineskins and of a “piece of unshrunken cloth” that will tear an old cloth if patched into it. Elements of Judaism that were either a temporary dispensation (e.g. the animal sacrifice) or a mere preparation for something better are surpassed by the Bridegroom Jesus Christ. He blesses us in a new way that shatters old categories and conventions. In his public ministry, Jesus did not require his disciples to fast the way the Pharisees and the disciples of John did. In the post-resurrection Church, “fasting”, with its many expressions, is still appropriate as long as it looks forward to the culmination of the kingdom. Fasting is done in the spirit of the Church-Bride waiting for Christ-Bridegroom’s return at the end time.

 

The radical newness of the kingdom and the “fasting” it entails can be perceived in the life of Mother Teresa of Calcutta (cf. Mother Teresa: Her Essential Wisdom, ed. Carol Kelly-Gangi, New York: Barnes and Noble, 2006, p. 97, 69, 64).

 

My sister and I used to read the same books. One day my sister read a book and passed it to me. As soon as I read two pages, I felt it would be a sin to read that book. Later I asked my sister whether she had read the book. She replied that she had and had found nothing wrong in it. There was no sin in my sister reading the book, but in conscience I could not read it. (…)

 

By our vow of chastity we renounce God’s natural gift to women to become mothers – for the greater gift – that of being virgins for Christ, of entering into a much more beautiful motherhood. (…)

 

I can’t bear being photographed but I make use of everything for the glory of God. When I allow a person to take a photograph, I tell Jesus to take one soul to heaven out of Purgatory.

 

 

II. POINTS FOR THE EXAMINATION OF THE HEART: A Pastoral Tool for the MEDITATIO

 

Do I realize the radical newness of the kingdom of God that Jesus brings? How do I live out the radical newness of the kingdom?

 

 

III. PRAYING WITH THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the ORATIO

 

Jesus Lord,

you are the Bridegroom of the Church.

You call us to share in the feast of your kingdom.

You offer us to savor the “new wine” in fresh wineskins.

Teach us to practice true “fasting” on behalf of your kingdom.

Help us to express in our life

the beauty of the Gospel

and the radical newness that your life brings.

You live and reign,

forever and ever.

Amen.

 

 

IV. INTERIORIZATION OF THE WORD: A Pastoral Tool for the CONTEMPLATIO

 

The following is the bread of the living Word that will nourish us throughout the day. Please memorize it.

 

“Pour new wine into fresh new wineskins.” (Mt 9:17)

 

 

V. TOWARDS LIFE TRANSFORMATION: A Pastoral Tool for the ACTIO

 

Examine the actions and choices in your life that are not “new wine” in new wineskins and ask the Lord for the grace to overcome them. With the strength of the Holy Spirit, carry out the “fasting” (e.g. from excessive use of digital media, etc.) that will benefit you spiritually and promote the kingdom of God.

 

***

 

 

Prepared by Sr. Mary Margaret Tapang  PDDM

 

 

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