Monday, December 11, 2006

Monday word, 11 Dec 2006

2d Advent Monday (11 Dec 2006) Is 35. 1-10; Ps 85; Lk 5. 17-26
Homily of Fr. Paul Panaretos, S.J.
Don’t Miss Today

The Advent Sundays set the rhythm for the liturgical celebrations during it. Sundays One and Two focus us on the Lord’s glorious return at time’s end. Sunday Three encourages deeper joy in the One who is to come. Sunday Four rehearses the ancestors of Messiah Jesus. Between each Sunday the weekday scriptures at mass amplify these and invite our hearts to soak in God’s saving love and to respond to it.

Yesterday highlighted the expectation that the Lord will save: God the light of his glory with his mercy and justice for company, we heard Prophet Baruch proclaim in yesterday’s first reading; and we heard John the Baptizer invite us to renew our relationships with the Lord, who will ensure that “all flesh shall see the salvation of God.”

Isaiah continues to proclaim God’s intention. People who believe in God’s intention enact their belief when they offer encouragement to others. To encourage is to restore hope and dignity to people. Often we are unaware that we’ve encouraged another. What seems a small thing to us may have saved another’s life.

Often we are unaware that the Lord saves us because the Lord routine works in us indirectly-- through another person, through an event or a created thing. Any time we feel restored to our true selves, our God-given selves, we taste a bit more of salvation. We come home to our true selves, our God-given selves. That metaphor--coming home--helps us appreciate something we might easily overlook in today’s gospel. While we may accept it as the norm to live at home or at an assisted-living place with a disorder or chronic illness, it was not so in the ancient world. Lepers, paralytics and others who could not fend for themselves often begged and existed as refugees. Jesus restored the paralytic to his home. Jesus did much more than send him there, Jesus began saving him physically and emotionally. Be alert today how Jesus desires to restore you and give you a new beginning of your salvation.

Photo by tbee

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