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Parish Daily Update 10/14/20

Dear Parish Family,

“We must not be surprised when we hear of murders, of killings, of wars, of hatred.  If a mother can kill her own child, what is left but for us to kill each other.”      ~St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Last week we sent a mailing to all parishioners with information on “Faithful Citizenship” to help you with your voting discernment.  It includes information from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops regarding the teachings of the Church, the forming of conscience, and the responsibilities we face when we vote.  Please take the time to read and review it in advance of the upcoming election – it is VERY good information.

God bless,

Pam

Memorial of Saint Teresa of Jesus, (Avila)

Virgin and Doctor of the Church

Thursday October 15th

First Reading:  Ephesians 1:1-10

Paul, an Apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, to the holy ones who are in Ephesus
and faithful in Christ Jesus: grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ
with every spiritual blessing in the heavens, as he chose us in him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and without blemish before him. In love he destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ, in accord with the favor of his will, for the praise of the glory of his grace
that he granted us in the beloved. In Christ we have redemption by his Blood, the forgiveness of transgressions, in accord with the riches of his grace that he lavished upon us. In all wisdom and insight, he has made known to us the mystery of his will in accord with his favor that he set forth in him as a plan for the fullness of times, to sum up all things in Christ, in heaven and on earth.

Responsorial Psalm:  Ps 98:1, 2-3, 3-4, 5-6

R. The Lord has made known his salvation.
Sing to the LORD a new song,
for he has done wondrous deeds;
His right hand has won victory for him,
his holy arm.
R. The Lord has made known his salvation.
The LORD has made his salvation known:
in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice.
He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness
toward the house of Israel.
R. The Lord has made known his salvation.
All the ends of the earth have seen
the salvation by our God.
Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands;
break into song; sing praise.
R. The Lord has made known his salvation.
Sing praise to the LORD with the harp,
with the harp and melodious song.
With trumpets and the sound of the horn
sing joyfully before the King, the LORD.
R. The Lord has made known his salvation.

Gospel:  Luke 11:47-54

The Lord said:
“Woe to you who build the memorials of the prophets whom your fathers killed. Consequently, you bear witness and give consent to the deeds of your ancestors, for they killed them and you do the building. Therefore, the wisdom of God said, ‘I will send to them prophets and Apostles;
some of them they will kill and persecute’ in order that this generation might be charged
with the blood of all the prophets shed since the foundation of the world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah who died between the altar and the temple building. Yes, I tell you, this generation will be charged with their blood! Woe to you, scholars of the law! You have taken away the key of knowledge. You yourselves did not enter and you stopped those trying to enter.”
When Jesus left, the scribes and Pharisees began to act with hostility toward him and to interrogate him about many things, for they were plotting to catch him at something he might say.

Homily

“Woe to you, scholars of the law! You have taken away the key of knowledge. You yourselves did not enter and you stopped those trying to enter.” Luke 11:47-54

The Pharisee’s dinner party with Jesus that we began reading about on Tuesday comes to a bad end in today’s Gospel.

Jesus has not been the gracious guest they expected; he sees through their posturing. He calls the Pharisees out on their arrogance and greed, their pride and authoritarianism, their self-importance and contempt for those they consider inferior. In today’s reading from Luke’s Gospel, Jesus takes on the scribes who are present for using their positions of authority to preserve their own status and rank rather than to bring justice and relief to the poor and suffering.

The dinner breaks up with the Pharisees determined to bring down this rabbi who is winning the hearts of the people.

Let’s not leave the dinner party that way. Let’s take some time today to ask ourselves when we have “Pharisee-like” moments of selfishness, arrogance, bigotry, contempt in our relationships and interactions with others and resolve to follow Jesus in his Gospel of humble service and joyful gratitude.

O God, you have instilled in us intellect and wisdom; you have entrusted us with skills and abilities. May your Spirit inspire us to use what we have learned to enable others to live lives of hope and promise and to put our gifts and talents to the work of creating your Kingdom of mercy and justice.

An Act of Spiritual Communion
My Jesus, I believe that You are present
in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love You above all things,
and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally,
I ask You to come spiritually into my heart.
I embrace You, trusting that you are already there and I unite myself wholly to You.
Never permit me to be separated from You.  Amen.

Saint Teresa of Jesus, Virgin and Doctor of the Church

October 15th

Known to her family as Teresa de Cepeda y Ahumada, she became the reformer of Carmel, mother of the Discalced Carmelite nuns and friars, “spiritual mother” (as is engraved under her statue in the Vatican Basilica), patron of Catholic writers (from 1965) and Doctor of the Church (1970), the first woman with Saint Catherine of Siena to ever receive this last title.

She was born at Avila in Castile, Spain, on 28th March 1515 and died in Alba de Tormes, near Salamanca, on 4th October 1582 (a correction due to the Gregorian reform of the calendar that year, as the following day was officially 15th October). She was beatified in 1614, canonised in 1622 and her feast day occurs on 15th October.

Her life needs to be understood in the light of the plan which God had for her, with the great desires experienced in her heart, with the mysterious illness to which she was subject in her youth (and with the ill health from which she suffered throughout her life), and with the “resistance” to divine grace for which she blamed herself more than she should has. Running away from home, she entered the Carmel of the Incarnation in Avila on 2nd November 1535. As a result, partly of the prevailing conditions in the community and partly from her own spiritual difficulties, she had to struggle before arriving at what she called her conversion at the age of 39. But, benefitting from various spiritual directors, she then began to make great strides towards perfection.

In 1560, the idea first emerged of a new Carmel, where the Rule could be followed more closely, and this was realized two years later when the monastery of St. Joseph was founded without any endowments and “following the Primitive Rule”: a phrase that needs to be clearly understood because both then and later it was a notion which was more nostalgic and “heroic” than practical. Five years later Teresa obtained from the Prior General of the Order, John Baptist Rossi, then visiting Spain, permission to increase the number of monasteries and a licence to found two communities of contemplative Carmelite friars (later to be called Discalced) who would be the spiritual counterparts of the nuns and, as such, able to help them. At the death of Saint Teresa, there were 17 monasteries of nuns in the Reform, and the communities of friars also quickly outstripped the original number, some founded with permission from the Prior General Rossi but others, especially those in Andalusia, established against his will, relying on the approval of the apostolic visitators, the Dominican Vargas and the young Discalced Carmelite Jerome Gracian (a close spiritual companion of Teresa, for whom she vowed to do whatever he asked her, as long as it was not contrary to God’s law).

There followed a series of unedifying quarrels, made worse by the interference of the civil authorities and other outsiders, until in 1581, the Discalced were formed into a separate Province. Saint Teresa was then able to write, “Now all of us, Discalced and Calced, are at peace and nothing can hinder us from serving the Lord”.

Saint Teresa is among the most important figures of all time for Catholic spirituality. Her works – especially the four-best known (The Life, The Way of Perfection, The Mansions and The Foundations) – together with her more historical works, contain a doctrine which encompasses the whole of the spiritual life, from the first steps right up to intimacy with God at the center of the Interior Castle. Her Letters show her occupied with a great variety of everyday problems. Her doctrine on the unity of the soul with God (a doctrine which was intimately lived by her) follows the Carmelite tradition which had preceded her and to which she herself contributed in such a notable way, enriching it as well as passing the tradition on, not only to her spiritual sons and daughters, but also to the whole Church which she served so unsparingly. When she was dying, her one joy was to be able to affirm that “I die a daughter of the Church”.