Fr. René Butler MS - 3rd Sunday of Lent - I Thirst
I Thirst (3rd Sunday of Lent: Exodus 17:3-7; Romans 5:1-8; John 4:5-42) The French and Spanish Lectionaries include information that is not evident in the English translation of the first reading, i.e.: Meribah comes from the verb meaning “to... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 2nd Sunday of Lent - Vocation
Vocation (2nd Sunday of Lent: Genesis 12:1-4; 2 Timothy 1:8-10; Matthew 17:1-9) There is a slight contradiction between the Psalm and our second reading. In the first we read, “See, the eyes of the Lord are upon those who fear him, upon those who hope for... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 1st Sunday of Lent - Beware...
Beware the Tempter (1st Sunday of Lent: Genesis 2:7-9 & 3:1-7; Romans 5:12-19; Matthew 4:1-11) When the celebrant washes his hands at the end of the offertory, he says, “Wash me, O Lord, from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.” As he is... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 7th Ordinary Sunday -...
Holiness (7th Ordinary Sunday: Leviticus 19:1-2, 17-18; 1 Corinthians 3:16-23; Matthew 5:38-48) “Be holy, for I, the Lord, your God, am holy.” This sentence occurs four times in the Book of Leviticus. Observe the reason given for the command. It is... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 6th Ordinary Sunday -...
Hammer and Pincers (6th Ordinary Sunday: Sirach 15:15-20; 1 Corinthians 2:6-10; Matthew 5:17-37) Among the most distinctive features of the Apparition of Our Lady of La Salette, as you well know, are the hammer and pincers on either side of the crucifix. We are... Czytaj więcej
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Fr. René Butler MS - 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time - Sacrifice

Sacrifice

(32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time: 1 Kings 17:10-16; Heb. 9:24-28; Mark 12:38-44)

The life of a widow was hard. 1 Timothy 5 offers a series of precepts for the care of widows; Exodus 22:21 reads, “You shall not wrong any widow or orphan.”

The poor widow of today’s Gospel, like many people of her day, was probably paid daily for whatever work she could find. But, instead of putting aside what little she could, she chose on this occasion to put all she had, a pittance compared to what others gave, into the temple treasury.

If she had not done so, her contribution would never have been missed. And yet it is famous, because it was noticed, praised by Jesus himself. He did not draw a moral, and so we are free to draw our own. At the very least it means that whatever we do out of a generous faith has meaning for God.

In our second reading we read that Jesus, by his sacrifice, took away the sins of many. Had it not been for the resurrection, his sacrifice on the cross might have gone unnoticed by history. Unfortunately, over time, in many parts of the Christian world, its importance came to be taken for granted, if not forgotten.

In 1846, she who had stood at the foot of the cross came to a mountain in France. Two innocent children were given a message to remind their people—her people—how far they had strayed, how little they understood the worth of what was accomplished for them by her Son, who was “offered once to take away the sins of many, [and] will appear a second time, not to take away sin but to bring salvation to those who eagerly await him.”

Recently I read one of the great Christian classics, John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress. A pilgrim named Christiana, on learning of Jesus’ sacrifice and the forgiveness it brings, exclaims: “Methinks it makes my heart bleed to think that he should bleed for me. O thou loving One! O thou blessed One! Thou deservest to have me; Thou hast bought me. Thou deservest to have me all; Thou hast paid for me ten thousand times more than I am worth.”

Indeed, we can never truly repay the price paid for us. Our first response may be regret, but then comes gratitude, and then the desire to give what we can in return, no matter how great, no matter how small. 

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