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Tuesday

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THE COMPASSIONATE CHRIST

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One of the great images of the Church as a body is given by Saint Paul in today's first reading. Just as a body has many parts, so does the Church. The body for its best functioning needs all the parts to interact. As we get older, we realize what happens to our overall health when our hearing becomes less acute, our sight less sharp, our legs less strong, our vitality more diminished. So, in the Church, we need all the parts to function well. Not everyone is a bishop nor a priest. The gifts or parts of the Body of Christ are distributed among the baptised.

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LIKE THE APOSTLES WE NEED TO BE CLOSE TO JESUS

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1 Cor. 6:1-11 & Lk. 5:12-19

A difficulty among his Corinthian converts is dealt with by Saint Paul in today's First Reading. He is not at all happy to witness Christians having recourse to the civil authorities. Such matters should be settled by those within the faith. Surely there are wise and good people among them who could help settle issues and reconcile Christians?

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WITH WHAT AUTHORITY DOES JESUS SPEAK TO US?

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1 Cor. 2:10-16 & Lk. 4:31-37

In how many different languages is Mass said around the world every day? And what language does God use when He speaks to us as individuals? It is not any human language, in fact, for He speaks to us through the Spirit.

We can learn something about God through using the intellect He has given us, by reading and thinking about the Scriptures. But to get the best from them we need to ask the Holy Spirit to help us.

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PUT YOUR CONFIDENCE IN CHRIST FOR THE DAY HE RETURNS

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2 Thess. 2:1-3 & Mt. 23:23-26

Problems in their church prompted St Paul to write his second letter to the Thessalonians. Many members of it were preoccupied with the second coming of Jesus and certain self-styled experts in biblical prophecy were warning that the Day of the Lord was at hand. This stirred a lot of unease in the congregation. Some people were terrified because they did not feel prepared for the end. Others were so convinced that the end would be soon that they quit their jobs and abandoned their homes.

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HOW FOOLISH IT IS TO PLAY GOD

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Ez. 28:1-10 & Mt. 19:23-30

The greatest sin is to try to make yourself God. This is what the ruler of Tyre did. He did not worship the Creator of Heaven and Earth - but himself! Having amassed piles of gold and silver he felt completely independent and did not need God. Ezekiel courageously condemned this powerful but foolish man in unmitigated terms.

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TO THOSE WHO LOVE GOD HIS MESSAGE IS SWEETNESS

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Ez. 2:8-34 & Mt. 18:1-5, 12-14

Ezekiel, like many of the prophets, was sent by God to proclaim a message of warning to the people. The scroll represented this message of God and Ezekiel's eating of it was a sign that he had assimilated God's word. It became part of his being. He found the word of God as sweet as honey.

Experience will teach us that God's word is our peace. Ultimately, we will always find joy in accepting His word. And yet when Ezekiel proclaimed this word to the people they found it so bitter that they rejected it.

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NEVER TAKE YOUR EYES OFF JESUS

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Jer. 30:1-2, 12-15, 18-22 & Mt. 14:22-36

Nothing can save the Israelites. God admits this in today's first reading. Their sins of disobedience and unfaithfulness have caused them injuries beyond healing and they have no one to plead their cause. Yet as desperate as the situation is, God remains committed to His Covenant with Israel and determines not to abandon them.

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HOW DO WE REACT WHEN THINGS GO WRONG?

Liturgical Colour: 

Jer. 14:17-22 & Mt. 13:36-43

When disasters occur we often look for someone to blame. It's the government's fault. It's our neighbour's fault. It's God's fault. It happened, too, in the time of Jeremiah when, apparently, Judah was suffering from war and drought.

Some people looked around for others to blame for the calamity, indignant that in their innocence they had to suffer. Still others believed that they had better find someone other than God to help them, but not Jeremiah who tells us how we should react in times of adversity.

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HOW TO BE AKIN TO JESUS

Liturgical Colour: 

Micah 7:14-15, 18-20 & Mt. 12:46-50

Today's First Reading is a beautiful prayer asking God to shepherd His people. From an early period in the Old Testament era God as Shepherd was a warm and heartening image for the people. Jesus used that image for Himself, and for centuries later it still held much meaning while society continued seeing shepherds and grazing sheep.

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THE GOOD HABIT OF EXAMINING OUR CONSCIENCE

Liturgical Colour: 

Is. 7:1-9 & Mt. 11:20-24

We all like to hear good things about ourselves! This is especially true when we go to a doctor with the hope that there is nothing seriously wrong with us. Doctors would be doing a great disservice if they were to pretend that we are in good health when actually we are not. Their real kindness and concern are shown in telling us the truth and indicating what we must do for our health.

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