Jeremiah 46-48; Mark 6

Posted July 15, 2018 by Thomas Walker
Categories: Catholicism, Faith

Mark 6:4  Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and among his own kin and in his own house.”

This would lead to similar musings from Mark 3:21 When his relatives heard of this they set out to seize him, for they said, “He is out of his mind.”  Familiarity does breed a degree of contempt, even if it’s rooted in love.  There are countless attestations of people who experience a change in their faith life, and things summarily get tense at home.  That oft-repeated dictum “God first, family second” can get severely put to the test.  And does Jesus offer consolation?  Not really…

Matthew 10:37  Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

Living a true Christian life is no piece of cake!

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Jeremiah 43-45; Mark 5

Posted July 11, 2018 by Thomas Walker
Categories: Catholicism, Faith

Mark 5:17  Then they began to beg him to leave their district.

Seems strange, after the healing of the demoniac – indeed a “mighty deed” of our Lord – that the Gerasenes want Jesus to hit the road, not throw him a party.  Maybe not so strange, as there was a price to pay.  How many of us would beg Christ to “leave our district”, especially when offered a cross?

Jeremiah 40-42; Mark 4

Posted July 4, 2018 by Thomas Walker
Categories: Catholicism, Faith

Mark 4:30-32  He said, “To what shall we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable can we use for it?  It is like a mustard seed, when it is sown in the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth.  But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the sky can dwell in its shade.”

There is sometimes confusion between this mustard seed and the mustard seed described in Matthew 17:20, the “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed…” mustard seed.  In Mark Jesus is metaphorically describing the Church, and “all the birds of the sky” are all peoples, of all races, nations, and tongues.  Fr. George Rutler in a commentary said all birds are welcome, “even the cuckoos.”

Happy 4th everyone.  Please pray for our country, that we recognize even though we disagree, we’re all Americans.

Jeremiah 37-39; Mark 3

Posted July 3, 2018 by Thomas Walker
Categories: Catholicism, Faith, Humor

Mark 3:21  When his relatives heard of this they set out to seize him, for they said, “He is out of his mind.”

Makes me think of that failed ad campaign by Olive Garden, “When you’re with us, you’re family.”  The last thing I want when eating out is to be treated like family.  I wanted to be treated like a respected stranger who tips well.  You don’t get that with family.  Of course in fairness to them, they don’t want a prophet at the dinner table either: “Prepare for the great day of wrath!  And please pass me the rolls.”

Jeremiah 34-36; Mark 2

Posted June 28, 2018 by Thomas Walker
Categories: Catholicism, Faith

Mark 2:16-17  Some scribes who were Pharisees saw that he was eating with sinners and tax collectors and said to his disciples, “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?”  Jesus heard this and said to them [that], “Those who are well do need a physician, but the sick do.  I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.”

Some simple logic avails us here: since we are all sinners, Jesus is calling all of us.  And we are all sinners: something to keep in mind in our culture of increasing vitriol, finger-pointing, virtue-signalling – of anger at them, this anger being fueled by self-righteousness.  An increasingly poisonous environment where if you see one of them dining at a restaurant or shopping at the big box store with their children you are encouraged to advise them of their sinfulness in a vehement way.  It’s really odd if you think about it that in a culture that increasingly professes the religion of Nice, there is increasingly so much “not nice” behavior.  Hmmm…..a conundrum.  I love that word.

Scandal

Posted June 22, 2018 by Thomas Walker
Categories: Catholicism, Faith

The breaking scandal around Cardinal Theodore McCarrick disgusts me.  Not so much the details of his perfidy, but the apparent knowledge – or at least strong suspicions – by many in and outside the Church for a long time about it.  I understand better now why people say they left the Church because of such scandalous behavior by clerics.  That a seminarian – a young man called to renounce much of this world to follow Christ – would feel he had to submit to the advances of someone who had the power to end his dream of becoming a priest is an enormous institutional failure in our Church.

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/cardinal-mccarrick-everybody-knew/

The Church has – and has had throughout its 2000 year history – its share of perverse and power-hungry scumbags.  It is represented on earth by human beings, and we all know how problematic they can be.  It’s a “people problem”, as Human Resources likes to say, one that’s been around since since Adam and Eve got dismissed from Eden, Inc.

I have been part of a men’s Rosary group for almost a decade, and during Lent we pray the Sorrowful Mysteries.  The Third Mystery is Christ being crowned with thorns, and we ask to receive the fruit of this mystery, which is moral courage.  Seems like not only around this issue, but in our political and cultural life there is a moral courage drought, whether it’s regarding immigrants, abortion, and on and on.

Now don’t read into this rant that I approve of leaving the Church.  The Holy Roman Catholic Church is Jesus’ Church, his inviolate sacred bride, the way of the Truth and the Life.  Jesus knew Judas was rotten, but he didn’t kick him to the curb.  And please don’t interpret that as me saying we should give rotten old McCarrick a hot mug of tea and a hug.  Let us all pray every day for him and his like, that they find repentance; for the victims of abuse, that they find healing; for ourselves, for the fruit of moral courage to do what is right when doing what is right is going to be painful.  At this point in my life I can talk a good game but I don’t know if I actually “have game”, as we would say on the basketball court.

God bless,

Tom

Happy Anniversary!

Posted June 21, 2018 by Thomas Walker
Categories: Catholicism, Faith

Mark 10:6-9  ‘But from the beginning of creation, God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother [and be joined to his wife], and the two shall become one flesh.’  So they are no longer two but one flesh.  Therefore what God has joined together, no human being must separate.”

38 years ago today Mary and I got married. It’s been amazing, and it seems like no time at all, but 38 years it’s been 3 children, 2 fantastic daughter-in-laws and their wonderful families, 3 grandchildren, with a 4th on the way.  I’m grayer, fatter, and have lost a few inches off my vertical leap – well, I now have no vertical leap, so I’m actually being truthful.  She however is just as beautiful as ever, and I look forward to being with her at the early-bird buffet special in Heaven.

For all of the wackos that want to redefine marriage and family….

Matthew 22:29  Jesus said to them in reply “You are misled because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God.”