Vineyards of En-Gedi | Homiletic Explorations into Communion, community, and evangelization
193
home,paged,page-template,page-template-blog-compound,page-template-blog-compound-php,page,page-id-193,paged-2,page-paged-2,ajax_updown_fade,page_not_loaded,,qode-title-hidden,qode_grid_1300,qode-content-sidebar-responsive,transparent_content,qode-theme-ver-17.2,qode-theme-bridge,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.6,vc_responsive
  • The practical spirituality and ministry implied in the I Corinthians 5 reading is too much to pass up; the gospel story of the prodigal son provides a concrete example of what Paul is talking about for the Church. Reconciliation shows itself in the qualities of justice, joy, thanksgiving, humility, and wisdom. The joy in this Laeta...

  • Lent means to transform us into conformity with Christ in the flesh and in the resurrection. So the Lenten sojourner witnesses the transfiguration of Christ, and thus is enabled to enter into a deeper understanding of th Paschal Mystery for one’s self. Thus, a significant milestone in the Lenten walk with Jesus is attained. Lent ...

  • Human life is frail, given to the distractions of the world and subject to the whim of bad luck and needing to be set free from the oppression of the world’s domination. God appears to Moses and in the person of Jesus Christ to save us from slavery to sin and to accompany us in mercy on our own journey to Jerusalem. The readings ...

  • The gospel story is so well known and so many readers get fixated on whatever Jesus mysteriously wrote in the dust of the Temple pavement. Sometimes the main message of the personal encounter with Jesus is missed, but perhaps this is the binding link for the readings. If anything, the highlights of the Philippians reading are key t...

  • The readings challenge us to think about the dynamics and psychology of sin from the view of these ancient texts. Recognition of the truth of the human condition and authentic honesty about ourselves will result in an increase of yearning for Jesus. Sin is never comfortable to discuss, and yet it should not be in a “hell fire and...

  • The Ash Wednesday proclamation focused on prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, each the opposite of money, power, and fame. The gospel makes us consider the ways of the world as opposed to the ways of God. All God’s blessings belong to God; we return our money, power, fame and we praise God alone. How do these readings mature us in o...

  • Lectionary CatechesisFr. Alan Hartway, CPPS Guardian Angels Parish in Mead, CO Thus Lent begins. God desires conversion of heart; our Lenten practices are directed to that goal or end. At the same time, the three penances commended by Jesus are done for others who have less than we have ourselves; at any angle, penance has som...

  • The anointed one, foretold in Cyrus according to Isaiah, and fulfilled in Jesus Christ comes to save us through the trial of baptism, death to sin and an assent to God’s grace in the resurrection. The readings are about lamentation for the effects of sin; this is what Pope Francis means by a renewal of compunction, the gift of te...

Homiletics Notes / 14.10.2019

Let reflect on prayer and faithfulness. In the first reading, a battle between the Hebrews and Amalekites occurs before the arrival at Mt. Sinai. The story is not abut the battle, but about how the battle was won. Moses seems almost casual about "choosing some men," as if to say Joshua would not need many because God would create the victory. This shows a faith on the part of Moses and Joshua. Moses prays on a hilltop; Joshua fights and mows down Amalek. One NAB version has "defeated", perhaps chosen as less gory than "mowed down." The battle was long enough that Moses grew weary, requiring the support of the priests Aaron and Hur. The scene reflects the ancient hand and arm posture for prayer that appears in all the iconography of the ancient world --- arms outstretched, hands open in petition. Folded hands are a very recent style of prayer. The liturgical presider only has folded hands when he is not praying, the ancient gesture of prayer enduring. In some sense here we see prayers and actions working together, necessarily accompanying one another. Both are done with faith. The story ends (not included in the lectionary portion) with some curious things. First Moses is told to write the story down, which would have been almost 200 years before our current earliest known example of proto-Hebrew, to remember the story, and Ethen the very next verse tells that God will wipe out the memory of Amalek, yet strangely remembered in the story. Moses also builds an altar at the battle site to commemorate God's victory. Often prayer can be both a struggle for us and a battle with our inner demons to turn ourselves over to God in faith and trust. Prayer is also a struggle because we acknowledge our own helplessness in the face of some obstacle, and so we turn to the Lord, again out of faith. We endure in our prayer, sometimes for years. ...

Homiletics Notes / 14.10.2019

Here begins reflections on the readings of Ordinary Time 29 C. So, in Luke's telling of the gospel, Jesus continues his journey to Jerusalem, and immediately after the healing of the ten lepers in some unnamed village, arguably Samaritan, some Pharisees come into view (were they traveling with him?) and ask about the coming of the reign of God, which precipitates a teaching by Jesus on the reign that is among them and teachings about the end of the world. Luke may very be remembering the Jewish War of AD 67-71 which ended in the fall of Jerusalem to the Romans. The teaching leads Jesus to the Parable of the Judge and the Widow and the necessity of persistent prayer. Indeed all the teachings and events of Luke 18 are about the coming and present reign of God as Jesus himself nears Jerusalem. ...

Homiletics Notes / 12.10.2019

Jesus journeys to Jerusalem, and necessarily passes through Samaritan territory, which alone would have been surprising to most following him, but this incident with the lepers (arguable indigenous to the region and therefore all Samaritans) allow Luke to continue his theme of universalism and his theme of "even if only one is saved." The one leper returns as a response to his faith, not that ritual purity healed him but that Jesus did. His prostration at the feet of Jesus acknowledges his divinity, for only to God would a Samaritan or a Jew prostrate themselves. This theme of the recognition of the true God runs through the readings. Naaman now worships the God of Israel; Paul "remembers Christ;" the Samaritan returns for true worship. This is a very difficult theme to sell in America today. The faith of the leper saved him, not the body of his former thoughts and attitudes. He had been invested in the law, but now is freed from his disease so that he can return to community. Jesus teaches discipleship on his way to Jerusalem. In these readings we learn that the constituent parts of discipleship includes: faith, thanksgiving, the free gift from God, worship of the true God in true worship. And all these things are unmerited gifts from God. ...