Sunday, September 12
Twenty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Roman Ordinary calendar
St. Guy of Anderlecht († c.1012)
Book of Isaiah 50,5-9a.
The Lord opens my ear that I may hear,
and I have not rebelled, have not turned back.
I gave my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who plucked my beard; My face I did not shield from buffets and spitting.
The Lord GOD is my help, therefore I am not disgraced; I have set my face like flint, knowing that I shall not be put to shame.
He is near who upholds my right; if anyone wishes to oppose me, let us appear together. Who disputes my right? Let him confront me.
See, the Lord GOD is my help; who will prove me wrong?
I love the LORD because he has heard
My voice in supplication,
Because he has inclined his ear to me
The day I called.
The cords of death encompassed me;
The snares of the netherworld seized upon me;
I fell into distress and sorrow,
And I called upon the name of the LORD,
“O LORD, save my life!”
Gracious is the LORD and just;
Yes, our God is merciful.
The LORD keeps the little ones;
I was brought low, and he saved me.
For he has freed my soul from death,
My eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling.
I shall walk before the Lord
In the land of the living.
Letter of James 2,14-18.
What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him?
If a brother or sister has nothing to wear and has no food for the day,
and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well,” but you do not give them the necessities of the body, what good is it?
So also faith of itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
Indeed someone might say, “You have faith and I have works.” Demonstrate your faith to me without works, and I will demonstrate my faith to you from my works.
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Mark 8,27-35.
Jesus and his disciples set out for the villages of Caesarea Philippi. Along the way he asked his disciples, «Who do people say that I am?»
They said in reply, “John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others one of the prophets.”
And he asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter said to him in reply, “You are the Messiah.”
Then he warned them not to tell anyone about him.
He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and rise after three days.
He spoke this openly. Then Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.
At this he turned around and, looking at his disciples, rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan. You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.”
He summoned the crowd with his disciples and said to them, “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.
For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and that of the gospel will save it.”
Saint Raphael Arnaiz Baron (1911-1938)
Spanish Trappist monk
To know how to wait 03/04/38 (trans. Mairin Mitchell, 1964)
“Whoever wishes to come after me must take up his cross, and follow me”
How can I describe what my soul felt when, from the mouth of the holy prelate, I heard the very thing that is my obsession, that which makes me completely happy in my exile, the love of the Cross! (…) Oh who will give me the command of words which David had, to describe the wonders of the love of the Cross? (…)
Oh! the Cross of Christ, what more can one say? I don’t know how to pray, I don’t know what it is to be good. I haven’t a religious spirit, as I’m full of the world. One thing I know, one thing which fills my heart with joy: in spite of seeing myself so poor in virtue, so rich in the reverse, I have a treasure which I wouldn’t change for anything or anyone – my cross – the Cross of Jesus, that Cross which is my only ease. How can I explain it? Whoever hasn’t felt this can’t have the remotest idea what it is.
Would to God that everyone would love the Cross of Christ! Oh, if the world could know what it is to embrace fully, truly, without reservation and with frenzy of love, the Cross of Christ! (…) How much time is lost in conversations, devotions, exercises that are good and holy but are not the Cross of Jesus and so are not the best forms of worship (…).
Poor, worthless, useless creature (…), dragging out your life, following as best you can the austerities of the Rule, be content with keeping your aspirations in silence, love to distraction that which the world counts nothing because it has no knowledge of it. Adore in silence, without telling anyone of it, the Cross which is your treasure. In silence, at its foot, meditate on the greatness of God, the wonders of Mary, the wretchedness of man (…). Follow your life in silence always, loving, adoring, and united with the Cross. What more can you wish? Savor the sweetness of the Cross, as the Lord Bishop said this morning, find delight in the Cross.