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Lorida, Florida
Tir De , Gaelic for "God's Country"

 
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Spiritual Reflections
by Fr. Sean C. Mulcahy,
D.Min., LMFT, AAPC

A Talk for the Fifth Sunday of Lent
March 22nd 2015

“Following the Savior”


This week’s Time magazine had a very informative article titled ; ‘The Joy of Less’; as it states: “Americans have more possessions than any society in history. Can we finally take control of them? Despite all the stuff Americans accumulate, it is not making them any happier. The self-storage industry raked in $24 billion in 2013. Another shocker: Toys are US – we have “US children make up just 3.1% of the global kid population, but American families buy 40% of the world’s toys”. “Today, about 1 in 6 Americans suffers from an anxiety disorder for a variety of reasons, something that appears to be not only a cause of our stuffocation but also an effect. To alleviate feelings of anxiety, many of us shop, an act that has been shown to release dopamine in the brain, giving us a temporary feeling of euphoria –we want to keep reliving that, hence it can lead to overconsumption.”

That’s one approach to life, and it’s very easy to follow it-you fit right in, keeping up with the Joneses. Another approach is powerfully portrayed by James Foley, Journalist, Man of Faith .And this is a quote from the ST. Anthony Messenger for March: “Jim died for freedom. Jim died for truth. But the fact of the matter is that Jim died because he wanted the world to know what the Syrian people were experiencing. He taught us that the meaning of life by being willing to lay down his own life for others”.—Fr. Paul Gousse – James Foley’s pastor.

This sets the stage, for our readings today: “But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel . . I will place my law within them and write it on their hearts; I will be their God, and they shall be my people. All from least to greatest, shall know me, says the Lord, for I will forgive their evildoing and remember their sin no more”. Jeremiah 31. Our responsorial psalm: “Create a clean heart in me, O God” –remember folks – every good gift is from above –God. That’s what we mean by ‘grace’ .Our second reading from Hebrews 5 confronts us with the fact that the great promises in the first reading are indeed very costly. “In those days when Christ Jesus was in the flesh, he offered prayers and supplications with loud cries and tears to the o ne who was able to save him from death. Son though he was he learned obedience from what he suffered . .” In the gospel we see that some people wanted to see Jesus, and Jesus’ answer to that was :” THE hour has come for the Son of man to be glorified . Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat, but if it dies, it produces much fruit”. Jesus of course was referring to his coming suffering, and death.

We are called to become like Christ – to die to those things which keep us from following the cross .This coming week we will mark the 35 anniversary of the martyrdom of Archbishop Oscar Romero. His life offers a key to understanding the challenge of today’s readings. He began as a timid man, but when he saw innocent people getting killed along with his priests, he prophetically spoke out and in so doing upset the status quo – a Christ-figure.

 

 

 

 
 

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