Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

We have returned to what us called the Ordinary Time of the liturgical year. This name is something of a misnomer, for there is nothing at all ordinary about this time, in which we explore the multiple treasures of the mystery of Christ our Redeemer. Throughout the year as marked by the Church, we follow the extraordinary events of God's work of redemption, which finds its fullest manifestation in Our Lord[1].

Our Gospel today details the commission of the Apostles, who were given the authority of Christ Himself to teach, sanctify and govern the Church which He founded on the person of His Vicar, Peter, and the first Pope. This sending of the Twelve is the response of the pity which moves the heart of God for us: at the sight of the crowds, the heart of Jesus was moved with pity[2].

Divine compassion is one of authentic love. We sing in the Psalm: His mercy endures forever and we implore God for pity, a love of tender mercy, as we experience our sinfulness. The heart of our heavenly Father is filled with love and tender compassion for us, the crowds of humanity, as he sees us weary with sin, sometimes even to despair. In all of the sacraments of the Church He extends his most generous graces upon his, particularly to forgive us of the.

We express our piety –a gift of the Holy Spirit- by doing the will of the Father as we celebrate the sacramental life through which his gracious mercies are superabundantly bestowed. In baptism we are birthed by God, in Communion fed, in Confirmation sealed with the Spirit, and in Confession restored to life again after the death of sin. It is out of infinite love and pity for weak and sinful humanity that Christ empowers and sends forth the Apostles to both preach the Word of truth and make present the reign of God through the graces of the seven sacraments.

The divine love of Christ is evident in the fact that he holds nothing back from the Church, His Body. He gives His very self, particularly His Body and Blood in the Eucharist, so that we may have nothing less than His very own life, His holiness, His presence.

In every Eucharistic Sacrifice we perfectly express and fulfill the virtue of piety. The Mass is our thanks to our heavenly Father perfect offered in Jesus our Savior through the indwelling Spirit of God’s love. In every Mass we perfectly fulfill our duty to render gratitude through the virtue of piety.

God’s pity is thus met love for love by our piety. Knowing this truth cannot fail to fill our hearts once again with loving thanks. We pity, with God, those among us particularly weighed down by life’s cares and illness ■

[2] Mt 9: 36.
Ilustration: Marco Basaiti, Call of the Sons of Zebedee (1510), Panel, 386 x 268 cm, Gallerie dell'Accademia (Venice).
This painting from the high altar of the now demolished Carthusian church of Sant'Andrea della Certosa in Venice is noteworthy for its grandiose composition and warm, luminous colours. Zebedee was a Hebrew fisherman, the husband of Salome, and the father of James and John, two of the Apostles of Jesus. The call of the new apostles is a metaphor for the monastic vocation, a voluntary spiritual incarceration that is also a paradise of peace and contemplation, at least for the Carthusians. The remarkable broad landscape is nonetheless hemmed in by walls and rocks. there are many fishers, of souls and other catches.

Y entonces uno se queda con la Iglesia, que me ofrece lo único que debe ofrecerme la Iglesia: el conocimiento de que ya estamos salvados –porque esa es la primera misión de la Iglesia, el anunciar la salvación gracias a Jesucristo- y el camino para alcanzar la alegría, pero sin exclusividades de buen pastor, a través de esa maravilla que es la confesión y los sacramentos. La Iglesia, sin partecitas.

laus deo virginique matris