hiroshima

Sacrifice

Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Twelfth Sunday After Pentecost

Isaiah 1:1, 10-20
Psalm 50:1-8, 22-23
Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16
Luke 12:32-40

“God is raging in the prophet’s words,” says Abraham Heschel. In the vision of Isaiah, the word of the Lord scorches every act of the people’s worship and prayer.

What to me is the multitude of your sacrifices? Trample my courts no more. Bringing offerings is futile. I cannot endure solemn assemblies with iniquity. Your appointed festivals my soul hates. Even though you make many prayers, I will not listen; your hands are full of blood.

This is the message to faithful temple-goers! How could things go so wrong? Read more

More Than a Prophet

Fourth Sunday after Pentecost
Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

2 Samuel 11:26-12:10, 13-15
Galatians 2:15-21
Luke 7:36-8:3

I live in a small city that loves to fund raise with lavish galas. The nails get polished and the clothes are glamorous. The food is decadent and the entertainment stunning. For a few hours this jeans-only oil town puts on the Ritz. And people want to know who is going; facebook, twitter and local gossip heats up. Will the beloved mayor be there? How about the multimillionaire industry leaders? Are there national and international celebrities coming to town?

It makes me wonder what kind of buzz Simon’s dinner party was generating. Luke tells us Jesus was garnering attention across the countryside after he raised a widow’s son from death to life. Now Jesus the healer and prophet is in town and Simon has snagged him for dinner. Simon has the food prepared, the setting elegant, the invited influential and important guests arrive as uninvited townspeople crowd around to see the Pharisee and his guests.

In Simon’s eyes, all is going according to plan until one of the onlookers pushes through the crowd and clings to Jesus’ feet. As she kneels anointing his feet, her tears bathe his toes and she wipes their moisture away with her hair. Read more