Fr. René Butler MS - 22nd Ordinary Sunday -...
Humble Prayer (22nd Ordinary Sunday: Sirach 3:17-29; Hebrews 12:18-24; Luke 14: 1, 7-14) In today’s first reading we hear, “My child, conduct your affairs with humility.” In the gospel, Jesus says, “The one who humbles himself will be... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 21st Ordinary Sunday -...
Ingathering (21st Ordinary Sunday: Isaiah 66:18-21; Hebrews 12:5-13; Luke 12:22-30) In recent weeks we have reflected on some challenging readings, and today seems to be no exception. In Hebrews we are told to accept trials as a form of discipline. In the gospel,... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 20th Ordinary Sunday -...
Radical Faith (20th Ordinary Sunday: Jeremiah 38:4-10; Hebrews 12:1-4; Luke 12:49-53) Jeremiah, committed to his prophetic ministry, was deeply disliked. His enemies, in the first reading, accused him of demoralizing the people. The message of La Salette has a... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 19th Ordinary Sunday -...
Ready for the Pilgrimage? (19th Ordinary Sunday: Wisdom 18:6-9; Hebrews 11:1-2, 8-19; Luke 12:32-48) Brothers and sisters, are we ready? Have you ever planned to leave home at a certain time for a special event, only to have last-minute delays? These can be due to... Czytaj więcej
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Items filtered by date: June 2022

Hospitality

(16th Ordinary Sunday: Genesis 18:1-10; Colossians 1:24-28; Luke 10:38-42)

In the spirit of Mary’s words, “Come closer, children, don’t be afraid,” we welcome you once again to our weekly reflection. Make yourself at home.

Abraham, in the first reading, is a model of hospitality. He ran to meet the Lord and his companions, made them comfortable, and provided a festive meal. In our experience, aren’t food and drink almost always part of special events?

In Matthew 25, Jesus stressed the importance of meeting the needs of others, starting with food for the hungry and drink for the thirsty. And remember that he washed his disciples’ feet at the Last Supper, and gave them precious food and drink which we gratefully continue to receive to this day.

As reconcilers, we are also aware of the spiritual works of mercy, as we strive to help people understand the truth of God’s mercy and love, and his desire to draw us to himself. This requires a welcoming spirit on our part, patiently guiding, instructing, comforting, admonishing, etc. It helps if we can put ourselves in the place of the persons we reach out to.

As St. Paul describes himself in the second reading, we too are ministers, stewards of a grace which we are eager to share. We do so together at times, in a common effort. But as each of us is unique, we need to adapt our service to our own personality and gifts.

Here, Martha and Mary in the gospel are excellent examples. According to the gospel of John, Jesus was a regular guest in their home. We mustn’t think that Martha never listened to Jesus or Mary never helped with the serving. On this occasion, however, they demonstrated equal hospitality in different ways.

Someone had to make sure a meal was prepared. Martha assumed that responsibility.

Someone had to make Jesus feel welcome by being attentive to him in another way. It is unlikely that Mary was the only person sitting there and listening to him speak, but Jesus acknowledged that her presence was the right choice. It mattered to him.

The Beautiful Lady addressed the spiritual and material needs of her beloved people. But first she had to invite the children to come to her. To accomplish our ministry, we need to do the same.

Wayne Vanasse, and Fr. René Butler, M.S.

Published in MISSION (EN)
Thursday, 23 June 2022 22:23

Rosary - June 2022

Published in LAY ASSOCIATES (EN)

The Obvious Answer

(15th Ordinary Sunday: Deuteronomy 30:10-14; Colossians 1:15-20; Luke 10:25-37)

In the first reading, Moses states that the Law is not beyond his people’s ability to know it or carry it out. Mary at La Salette touches on some of the simplest and most obvious requirements of Christian and Catholic life. Both seem to be stating the obvious.

In today’s Gospel, a legal scholar is challenged by Jesus to find his own answer to the question about attaining eternal life. He doesn’t hesitate. “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” Pretty obvious, really.

Moses speaks of “this command that I enjoin on you today.” To enjoin means to prescribe, to encourage, to admonish, to prompt, etc. It implies an expectation of compliance. Mary hopes for the same, not only from Mélanie and Maximin, but from all those who will someday hear her words.

Observance of the law carries with it certain rewards. Today’s text from Deuteronomy follows upon a passage reminding the people of the blessings that come to those who heed the commandments. Jesus, in the Gospel, says, “Do this and you will live.” At La Salette, the Beautiful Lady promises an end to famine for those who submit to her Son.

Acting in view of a reward, however, is not an adequate fulfillment of the great commandment. The more perfectly we love God, the more natural it will be for us to live by his will.

Consider Jesus in his passion. He loved his Father with all his heart, pierced for our sins as blood and water poured forth; with all his being, as he entered fully into his Father’s will in the Garden of Gethsemane; with all his strength as he carried his cross; with all his mind as he prayed even for his enemies.

Mary, at the foot of the cross, united her love to his. At La Salette, she asked nothing for herself. It was natural for her to respond to the needs of her people, the obvious thing for her to do.

What must we do to inherit eternal life? Love the Lord, our God... Love our neighbor... Go and do likewise. Is that too mysterious, is that too remote?

Wayne Vanasse, and Fr. René Butler, M.S.

Published in MISSION (EN)
Tuesday, 14 June 2022 19:55

Monthly Bulletin 005

Published in LAY ASSOCIATES (EN)

The Joy and Boast of Missionaries

(14th Ordinary Sunday: Isaiah 66:10-14; Galatians 6:14-18; Luke 10:1-12, 17-20)

[NOTE: The following is lovingly dedicated to the memory of Bishop Donald Pelletier, M.S., 90, lifelong missionary to Madagascar, who died when struck by a car on June 4, 2022, even as this reflection was being prepared.]

In today’s gospel Jesus commissioned seventy-two disciples to precede him to towns and villages he intended to visit. He provided them with specific, rather daunting instructions as to the how, what, where, etc. of their mission. They had already spent significant time in his company, they were ready, off they went.

Their mission was a success, as we read: “The seventy-two returned rejoicing, and said, ‘Lord, even the demons are subject to us because of your name.’" La Salette Missionaries and Sisters and Laity are not strangers to this experience. Whether in unfamiliar lands and languages, or in our own little worlds, we know the joy of bearing a message of peace and promise, especially when it is well received.

But Jesus saw the possibility of failure, too, and told the disciples what to do in that case. St. Paul provides further guidance in the second reading: “May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Here it is good for us to remember once again that all the glorious light of the apparition of Our Lady of La Salette emanated from the crucifix resting over her heart. When we experience failure or rejection in our mission of reconciliation, we may imagine ourselves bathed in that same light.

That said, the dominant theme of today’s liturgy is joy. The first reading sets the tone. Isaiah has a vision of the exiles returning to Jerusalem, and compares them to an infant nursing exuberantly at its mother’s breast—an image of perfect happiness!

The Psalmist takes up the theme: “Shout joyfully to God, all the earth,” and then finds as many ways as possible to say it again.

Naturally we are delighted when our missionary efforts bear fruit. But let us not forget Jesus’ words, “Do not rejoice because the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” An added comfort for us, if needed, is that our names are inscribed in the heart of a Beautiful Lady.

Wayne Vanasse, and Fr. René Butler, M.S.

Published in MISSION (EN)

Which Yoke?

(13th Ordinary Sunday: 1 Kings 19:16-21; Galatians 5:1, 13-18; Luke 9:51-62)

Anyone who has seen traditional farming knows what a yoke is: a wooden structure placed over the neck of animals, for plowing or pulling heavy loads. Often two animals are yoked together, sharing the burden. This is part of the setting of the first reading.

St. Paul, however, uses the term in a figurative sense. “For freedom Christ set us free; so stand firm and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery.” He goes on to say that if we abuse our freedom, we are not free.

Does this remind you of a saying of Jesus? It is not in today’s Gospel, but rather in Matthew 11:30: “My yoke is easy, and my burden light.” This is usually understood as a yoke that Jesus places on our shoulders. But another possible reading is that he is inviting us to bear his yoke with him, to share in carrying his burden.

Either way, a right submission is required, a willingness to know his will and a desire to carry it out. This means, in a sense, exchanging one yoke for another. At La Salette, Mary offers a choice: submit humbly to the simple requirements of faith, or submit grudgingly to sufferings over which we have no control.

In today’s Gospel, three different persons decide to follow Christ. In the third case Jesus uses a farming image, close to that of the first reading: “No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the kingdom of God.”

St. Paul also reminds of another dimension of conversion: “The whole law is fulfilled in one statement, namely, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” This is close to what he writes in the next chapter of this letter: “Bear one another’s burdens and so you will fulfill the law of Christ.”

It is hard for us to change, and we often bear the burden of sin. The Church offers us the sacrament of Reconciliation to remove that weight, and to restore us to our freedom in Christ. The Beautiful Lady did not speak of this, but she had the same result in mind.

There is another striking image in the first reading that we do not wish to omit, that of Elijah’s mantle, symbolizing the passing on of the prophetic role. Has not Mary spread her mantle over us?

Wayne Vanasse, and Fr. René Butler, M.S.

Published in MISSION (EN)
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