Originally, in Deuteronomy, Moses permitted a man to divorce his wife based on some “uncleanness”, in order to protect the woman’s rights. In Jesus’ day, the stricter and more popular view of divorce taught that a man could do so for any reason, even if he found another woman to be more beautiful. Was the climate then, very much different from that of ours now?
In today's gospel, rather than debate the issue of indecency, Jesus addresses the hardness of people’s hearts. He explains that unless we invite God into our marriage, we marry for all the wrong reasons. God emptied Himself and His Spirit to us so utterly; we find it hard to comprehend. Should Love in any personal relationship call for anything less? The capacity to do so, results from a call to a close relationship with Jesus in the Spirit.
“Behold, the wages you withheld from the workers who harvested your fields are crying aloud.” James 5:4
The words of James are harsh. The gold coveted by the rich will consume them. Their zeal for luxury murders the poor. Hearts grown fat with comfort will face the day of slaughter. The wages robbed from workers weep. The psalmist warns that those who trust in folly will never see the light.
The program included several celebrations:
▪ On May 15, 2018, in the Basilica of St. John Lateran in Rome, there was a solemn celebration, at the same church, where two hundred years ago our Founder had received his priestly ordination. The pallottine Family gathered in great number at 3 p.m. in the Basilica, to thank the Lord in Eucharistic adoration for His multifold graces. Subsequently, at 5 pm, the Vicar of the Holy Father for the Diocese of Rome, Mons. Angelo De Donatis, presided over the Holy Mass.
Today gathering in the Cenacle together with Mary, Queen of the Apostles, our Mother and Patron, we pray for the blessing of the Lord and the gifts of the Holy Spirit for each Pallottine Sister and all members of the Union, that we may be faithful to the Lord with love and become zealous apostles in today's world.
▪ On April 9th, Pope Francis´ new Apostolic Exhortation, “Gaudete et Exsultate” – On the Call to holiness in today´s world - was presented at the Vatican News conference by Archbishop Angelo De Donatis, the Papal Vicar for the Diocese of Rome.
Will he go with us?
Today I would like to reflect on another term by which the Second Vatican Council defined the Church: “People of God”... What does “People of God” mean? First of all it means that God does not belong in a special way to any one people; for it is He who calls us, convokes us, invites us to be part of his people, and this invitation is addressed to all, without distinction, for the mercy of God “desires all men to be saved” (1 Tim 2,4).
In today’s gospel reading we see Jesus as teacher and our attention is drawn to teaching. Just as the job of a teacher is often a very difficult one today, so our Lord’s teaching job was a difficult one. His pupils, the disciples, were mostly mature men and women long past their childhood. Most of them had not had much formal schooling. They were not ideal pupils and teaching them was not always easy. There was no classroom and there was none of our modern teaching equipment and technology. The teaching of Jesus was done in the open air and subject to many distractions for the pupils. The teaching was often done, as here, while the group traveled on foot. Such obstacles were frustrating for Jesus. He sometimes expressed his frustration with his pupils, especially with their slow progress in acquiring the virtue of faith.
By Devin Watkins
Pope Francis has decreed that the ancient devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, under the title of Mother of the Church, be inserted into the Roman Calendar.
The liturgical celebration, B. Mariæ Virginis, Ecclesiæ Matris, will be celebrated annually as a Memorial on the day after Pentecost.
In a decree released on Saturday by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Cardinal Robert Sarah, its Prefect, said the Pope’s decision took account of the tradition surrounding the devotion to Mary as Mother of the Church.
He said the Holy Father wishes to promote this devotion in order to “encourage the growth of the maternal sense of the Church in the pastors, religious and faithful, as well as a growth of genuine Marian piety”.
Acts 2:1-11; Gal 5:16-25; Jn 15:26-27.16:12-15
Acts of the Apostles 2:1-11.
When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together. And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were. Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them. And they were all filled with the holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim. Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven staying in Jerusalem. At this sound, they gathered in a large crowd, but they were confused because each one heard them speaking in his own language. They were astounded, and in amazement they asked, "Are not all these people who are speaking Galileans? Then how does each of us hear them in his own native language? We are Parthians, Medes, and Elamites, inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the districts of Libya near Cyrene, as well as travelers from Rome, both Jews and converts to Judaism, Cretans and Arabs, yet we hear them speaking in our own tongues of the mighty acts of God."
“Lord, send out your Spirit and renew the face of the earth.”
Pentecost is often referred to as the birthday of the Church. We the Church then are “sent” to “renew the face of the earth” and ask in the words of the Gospel Acclamation “Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful; and kindle in them the fire of your love.” Anything less than this is a distortion of what it is to be Church.
We cannot renew the face of the earth by locking ourselves in church buildings and shutting ourselves off from the world chasing our own selfish needs and wants and what makes us FEEL good about ourselves. To be Church demands of us to ask the hard questions – not run away from them. It demands that we stop, we look at Jesus and we love with Jesus’ heart present in us, and from there we go out and we attempt to make a difference.
MARY, QUEEN OF APOSTLES
She is the Maid of Bethlehem,
Mother of Jesus, and Queen of Apostles:
That ragtag group of men
Chosen by Jesus
To change the world.