Fr. René Butler MS - 19th Sunday in Ordinary...
Food for the Journey (19th Sunday in Ordinary Time: 1 Kings 12:4-8; Eph. 4:30—5:2; John 6:41-51) The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick used to be called Extreme Unction. Today, Catholics understand that the sacrament is in view of healing, not death.... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 18th Sunday in Ordinary...
Futility of Mind (18th Sunday in Ordinary Time: Exodus 16:2-15; Ephesians. 4:17-24; John 6:24-35) St. Paul writes that the Gentiles live “in the futility of their minds.” His audience, the Christians of Ephesus, used to live this way but ought not to do... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 15th Sunday in Ordinary...
Moved with Pity (16th Sunday in Ordinary Time: Jer. 23:1-6; Ephesians 2:13-18; Mark 6:30-34) The word “shepherd” in Church usage refers to priests, and Jeremiah’s “Woe to the shepherds” text may well make us think of the scandals... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 14th Sunday in Ordinary...
Strength in Weakness(14th Sunday in Ordinary Time: Ezekiel 2:2-5; 2 Corinthians 12:7-10; Mark 6:1-6)We often experience our tears as a sign of weakness or vulnerability. We struggle against them, we hide them if we can. In many cultures, it is extremely rare for... Czytaj więcej
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Fr. Rene Butler MS - Sixth Sunday of Easter - Who Started it?

Who Started it?

(Sixth Sunday of Easter: Acts 10:25-48; 1 John 4:7-10; John 15:9-17)

People in conflict, whether individuals or nations, children or adults, tend to blame each other for starting the quarrel. Even at La Salette, Mary literally tells her people, “If the harvest is ruined, it is only on account of yourselves.”

The same may occur in a positive context. It is gracious to give credit to others for their part in our success. In Acts, the Apostles never take the credit for their accomplishments. As in today’s reading, they acknowledge that the Holy Spirit takes the initiative, in spectacular ways and with extraordinary gifts, such as the gift of tongues.

Notice, however, that the new disciples are doing two things: speaking in tongues, and glorifying God. Which of these is more important?

In writing to the Corinthians St. Paul addresses a controversy surrounding the gifts, and famously concludes: “If there are tongues, they will cease... So faith, hope, love remain, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”

Which brings us to the Gospel and the second reading, both from John, where love is mentioned a total of eighteen times. We are “beloved,” and God is love. John’s “Let us love one another,” finds even stronger expression in the Gospel: “This I command you: love one another.”

The last words of last week’s Gospel were, “By this is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.” The very next verse is the first statement of Jesus today: “As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love.” There is a connection, then, between glorifying God and abiding in the Lord’s love.

Mary appeared at a time of crisis in the life of her people. She chided them—lovingly—and then—lovingly—pointed them to the way of hope and peace. She is in turn much loved, but directs our love to her Son. Her message is echoed in the new translation of the Missal, in one of the forms of dismissal at the end of Mass: “Go in peace, glorifying the Lord by your life.”

That includes love. John writes, “In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us.” He sustains our love. He will see it through. Because he started it!

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