Daily Readings & Inspiration Daily

Memorial of Saints Cornelius, Pope, and Saint Cyprian, Bishop, Martyrs

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Reading I 1 Tm 4:12-16

Let no one have contempt for your youth,
but set an example for those who believe,
in speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity.
Until I arrive, attend to the reading, exhortation, and teaching.
Do not neglect the gift you have,
which was conferred on you through the prophetic word
with the imposition of hands by the presbyterate.
Be diligent in these matters, be absorbed in them,
so that your progress may be evident to everyone.
Attend to yourself and to your teaching;
persevere in both tasks,
for by doing so you will save 
both yourself and those who listen to you.

Responsorial Psalm 111:7-8, 9, 10

R.    (2) How great are the works of the Lord!
The works of his hands are faithful and just;
    sure are all his precepts,
Reliable forever and ever,
    wrought in truth and equity.
R.    How great are the works of the Lord!
He has sent deliverance to his people;
    he has ratified his covenant forever;
    holy and awesome is his name.
R.    How great are the works of the Lord!
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom;
    prudent are all who live by it.
    His praise endures forever.
R.    How great are the works of the Lord!

Alleluia Mt 11:28

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened,
and I will give you rest, says the Lord.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Lk 7:36-50

A certain Pharisee invited Jesus to dine with him,
and he entered the Pharisee’s house and reclined at table.
Now there was a sinful woman in the city
who learned that he was at table in the house of the Pharisee.
Bringing an alabaster flask of ointment,
she stood behind him at his feet weeping
and began to bathe his feet with her tears.
Then she wiped them with her hair,
kissed them, and anointed them with the ointment.
When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this he said to himself,
“If this man were a prophet,
he would know who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him,
that she is a sinner.”
Jesus said to him in reply,
“Simon, I have something to say to you.”
“Tell me, teacher,” he said.
“Two people were in debt to a certain creditor;
one owed five hundred days’ wages and the other owed fifty.
Since they were unable to repay the debt, he forgave it for both.
Which of them will love him more?”
Simon said in reply,
“The one, I suppose, whose larger debt was forgiven.”
He said to him, “You have judged rightly.”
Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon,
“Do you see this woman?
When I entered your house, you did not give me water for my feet,
but she has bathed them with her tears
and wiped them with her hair.
You did not give me a kiss,
but she has not ceased kissing my feet since the time I entered.
You did not anoint my head with oil,
but she anointed my feet with ointment.
So I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven;
hence, she has shown great love.
But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little.”
He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
The others at table said to themselves,
“Who is this who even forgives sins?”
But he said to the woman,
“Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

– – –

Lectionary for Mass for Use in the Dioceses of the United States, second typical edition, Copyright © 2001, 1998, 1997, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine; Psalm refrain © 1968, 1981, 1997, International Committee on English in the Liturgy, Inc. All rights reserved. Neither this work nor any part of it may be reproduced, distributed, performed or displayed in any medium, including electronic or digital, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Let Us Adore Him, Christ the Lord

This post was originally published on this site

The Gospel reading today is powerful and touching. A sinful woman, recognizing her sinfulness, ministers to Jesus by washing his feet with her tears, drying them with her hair, anointing them with fragrant ointment. In effect she is saying, “I know I am not worthy! I am so sorry! You are so good, so strong, so loving, so wise, that I can only find peace when I am bowed down before you, desperate to connect with you, but utterly aware of my unworthiness even to touch your feet. But I make bold to do it because your love compels me to be brave.”

It would be very counter-cultural to grovel like this! To acknowledge a God who is the supreme authority and the ultimate arbiter of what is right and wrong, what is true and not true. To say, “Whatever you will, I will do,” clashes with our sense of independence and self-determination. Over time, a distorted idea of “freedom” has become a kind of American religion. 

Even for those of us who acknowledge that there is a God and proclaim Christ as King, we sometimes don’t perceive how much like the Pharisee in this Gospel story we are. We might invite Christ into our home, but we are always watching him to make sure he behaves as he ought. As long as Jesus stays in his proper place, we will gladly serve him and further his Kingdom. Wait….what? 

We must constantly reassess out attitude toward God and toward Christ. One exercise we can do to remind ourselves of who we are and who Christ is, is modeled in this Gospel reading. We can literally get down on the floor and figuratively kiss the feet of Jesus. It is so healthy (and Catholic) to use the bodies that God has given us to demonstrate our love and devotion to him and our sorrow for our sins. 

How readily we can forget the reverence and the obedience that is due to Christ! We are his beloved, but we are also his servants. I thank God for the woman in this Gospel reading who reminds us WHO CHRIST IS… He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We are the sinners. His laws are perfectly just and one day, we will stand before his judgment throne.

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We welcome Christine Hanus as a new contributing author on our Diocesan team!

Feature Image Credit: Duane Mendes, https://www.pexels.com/photo/grayscale-photo-of-man-in-robe-8763798/

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