Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time: June 24-30, 2007

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Alexander, Andy, S.J.
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"Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof; only say the word and my servant will be healed." Matthew 8
The Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time|Sunday is the Solemnity of the Birth of Saint John the Baptist as we celebrate John, cousin of Jesus and prophet to us all. In Luke's gospel we read of his birth and of his naming as John's father, Zechariah, overrides the neighbors and relatives objections and declares, "John is his name."|Thursday is the Memorial of Saint Irenaeus, bishop and martyr. Friday is the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Apostles.|The first readings this week are from the Book of Genesis. We read the story of Sarah and Abraham and the complications of their lives as they long for a child and learn about trusting in God.|In the gospels this week we read the last part of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew. In the same way he has before, Jesus calls us deeper. We are not to judge so that we ourselves won't be judged. We are to be fair in treating others if we want to be treated fairly. We have to get the freedom to recognize our own faults before we try to remove others'. We are to care for others, as we would wish to be cared for. In all we do, the path we are to follow is a "narrow" one - which few seek out. Our security will come from building our lives of the solid rock of God's promises to us, rather than on the shifting sands of what the world might promise us. The week ends with Jesus going forth to heal: "He took away our infirmities and bore our diseases."|Sunday is the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time. In Luke's Gospel we hear of Jesus "resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem" but not being welcomed by all. When Jesus invites: "Follow me" he is put off with excuses. "No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the kingdom of God."
Daily Prayer This Week|Most of us know that having faith is more about confidence and trust in the Lord than it is about theological understanding or assent to truths. The biggest barrier to our more complete following of our Lord in faith is fear. This is a wonderful week to ask our Lord to heal us so that we can not be afraid and just have faith in him as we place our faith in his calming presence.|We can begin each day, sitting or standing at the edge of our bed and, in 30 seconds, simply name our desire. "Lord, thank you for this day. Please heal my fears. I want to place my trust in you more completely. Be with me in the tough stuff today." When we are in the shower or while getting dressed, as we we are heading to work or doing laundry, when we are walking down a hall to a meeting or even at a store shopping, we can expand on our prayer - again, briefly and in a friend to friend conversation with our Lord. "Dear Lord, I'm going to be facing several things today that are frightening. Don't let me lose sight of your presence with me today. Give me courage and an inner peace to do what you call me to do."|The phrases from Matthew's Gospel can work their way into our week so easily in this context. "Lord, let me know your love and mercy, that I might treat those I'm now judging with more of the love and mercy you show me." "Lord, it feels like you are inviting me to take a narrower path today than the one I usually take, following the way everyone around me goes. Help me choose your way with greater freedom and peace."|There is a real and sustaining joy that accompanies this sense of intimacy with our Lord, in the midst of our daily, busy lives. It seems right to take a few moments each night to express our thanks to the Lord for the gifts of the day.
University Ministry, Creighton University.
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