Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time: June 19-25, 2022

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Alexander, Andy, S.J.
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"Stop judging, that you may not be judged." - Matthew 8
Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time|Sunday in the U.S. is the The Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. For much of the rest of the world it is the Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time. We have Luke's Gospel with powerful words of sacrifice and focus for our lives: "If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it."|Tuesday we remember the Jesuit saint Aloysius Gonzaga, Religious. Thursday is the Solemnity of the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist. Friday is the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus. Saturday is the Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.|The first readings this week are from the Second Book of Kings. It is the story of the invasion by Assyria and then the invasion by Babylon, resulting in captivity that left a remnant of the people behind. The week closes with a reading from the Book of Lamentations.|This week we continue reading from Matthew's Gospel. Jesus continues his challenge to follow him more completely. "Stop judging, that you may not be judged." "Do to others whatever you would have them do to you." "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep"s clothing." "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven." "Who do you say that I am?" When a leper asks if Jesus will cure him, Jesus replies, "I will do it. Be made clean." Jesus cures the Centurion's servant: "Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof;only say the word and my servant will be healed."|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 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 feel like storms at sea. 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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