Celebrating a 61 years of life and 16 years in ministry at St. Mary’s University, Brother Mike Sullivan enjoyed a a special birthday dinner with the brothers of the Casa María Marianist Community on Monday, March 29. More photos on our Flickr set.
Archive for March 2010
Today’s Scripture: Jeremiah 20:10-13 ~ Psalm 18:2-3a, 3bc-4, 5-6, 7 ~ John 10:31-42
“Sing Praise to the Lord for he has rescued the life of the poor from the power of the wicked”
I’m sure it’s no accident that Jeremiah’s words come to us just one week before Good Friday. He speaks of betrayal , of false accusation, of darkness.
But just when we are about to get lost in despair, he speaks of the love and loyalty of God.
Today’s first reading is like a prelude to the passion of Christ. We see that even as we place our trust in God, the world can deal us a difficult, painful, and even terrifying lot, but we are reminded that even the darkest night ends at sunrise. Jeremiah trusts in God. He knows that God will deliver him from harm. Though he doesn’t know how, or what it will look like, he knows that the sun of justice will dawn, and God will be there to save.
I wonder if Jesus knew completely what surrendering his will to the will of God would ultimately mean. While he was being betrayed, falsely accused, beaten, humiliated, and crucified, was he able to trust that his Father would carry him through it and deliver him from his suffering?
He trusted God’s will… and he died on a cross.
He trusted God’s will… and he rose from the dead!
Perhaps our call today is simply to trust God’s will, even in darkness and uncertainty. We don’t know how, or what it will look like, but we must trust that God will bring us from adversity into the light of his love. We are called to know that our Lent ends with Christ’s Easter.
We are called to trust the will of God, and to know that he will save us from the hands of the wicked.
Scripture: Isaiah 48: 8-15 ~ Psalm 145: 8-9, 13-14, 17-18 ~ John 5:17-30
Today’s readings are rich with meaning; I was a little overwhelmed trying to figure out what I should talk about. In prayer I kept coming back to the last phrase of the Gospel, “I do not seek my own will, but the will of the one who sent me.”
This is a radical statement for a society that places great importance on individuality and independence. We live in an “it’s all about me” kind of world. To hear Jesus say “I do not seek my own will, but that of my father,” can seem very foreign and very uncomfortable. Weird and stupid.
I know in my own life, I had a very strong idea about what path I would walk down. I clung to this will very hard, for a very long time. I pursued my chosen path tenaciously, but I never got anywhere, and I never really felt fulfilled.
After a while, I got tired, I had tried so hard to make it without God, and it just wasn’t working. So I stopped running away, and tired to accept God’s call to something I had been refusing to consider. Suddenly I felt fulfilled, like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders. There are still things I always thought I would do, that I may not get to, but I’m okay with that. I’m working on it every day, and slowly, God’s will for my life, is becoming MY will for my life. And I’m finding now, that I have experienced things that I would never have experiencedhad I followed my own path.
I think we are all called to do this: to accept, a little more each day, that God’s will for us is the greater will, and to ask him to conform our will to his. Jesus came to call sinners because his Father sent him to do it. He accomplished this mission because he surrendered his will to the will of his Father. Just think of the things God could accomplish through us if we let go of our own selfish wants and allow his will to come into our lives.
If an Academy Award were given for today’s set of readings, the “best supporting character” award would go to…water. After all, the common theme shared with the first reading and Gospel is water—for its life-giving, life-sustaining and healing properties.
Nearly 3/4 of our planet is made up of water. Similarly, our bodies are made up of about 70 percent of water.
I would suspect that throughout history, many cultures would…
Continue reading the original post.
With spring break scheduled for the following week, Casa Tuesday celebrated an early St. Patrick’s day, March 9. Featuring a main dish of “Brother Brian’s Irish concotion” of cabbage, potatoes, squash, carrots and Italian sausage (as a substitute for corned beef), Hawaiian sweet bread (as a substitute for Irish Soda Bread) and Guinness chocolate cupcakes frosted with Bailey’s Irish buttercream and Shamrock sprinkles, the community made a valiant attempt to celebrate in style.
Casa María celebrated Norman’s birthday with Texas-sized burgers with bacon and avocado, homemade fries and caramel-banana foster ice cream cake on Monday, March 8. To wash that all down, the birthday boy enjoyed a bottle of Primo beer—found only in Hawai‘i.
A prophet is one who has been identified as “an individual who is inspired to proclaim the will of God in a visionary and new way.”
Inspired by the readings for today, my thoughts focused on the role of prophets in our world. In the Gospel, Jesus remarks that prophets often have been identified as the crazy ones who are the misfits, rebels, troublemakers—particularly in their native place.
The world would have been better off if it had listened to these prophets, rather than rejected them. So, if a genuine prophet of God were to enter our chapel at this moment, would we be ready? Would we be open to the prophet’s message? Can we discern how the prophet may invite us to deeper understanding of God’s presence in our daily life?
And while it is important to be vigilant and wary of those ‘false prophets’ whose thoughts are not inspired by God, I think there is some wisdom in this train of thought:
- The Church is a prophetic voice in our world.
- Religious orders, such as the S.M. and FMI, are prophetic voices in the Church.
- A local community within the S.M. can be a prophetic voice in the order.
- An individual Marianist can be a prophetic voice in the community…who then also can be a prophetic voice to the order, the Church and the world.
By virtue of the gifts that each one of us have been blessed with, along with our desire to follow Christ in a unique lifestyle that is rooted in faith—seeing how God is present in all parts of our daily lives—I believe that everyone in this chapel is called to be a prophetic voice in our world.
What makes this vocation truly Marianist is that it is done together with one another—and that is what we value as the gift of community.
We each are blessed with different gifts, personalities, abilities and other talents that we have yet to develop. By combining those gifts, we are better able to discern how God calls us to be prophetic and respond to the needs of others.
If God had wanted all of us to be the same, why would God make each one of us uniquely different? And that gift also is the challenge—to combine our individual uniqueness into “a community of one heart and mind.”
So what does it take to listen and learn from the prophetic voices in our midst? Disposition of openness, willingness to dialog / staying at the table, fidelity to prayer, patience, and the humility to remember we always are in God’s midst when “two or three are gathered in God’s name” as promised in scripture; and this means not only in chapel, but also at the dinner table, in our community and office meetings, our upcoming consultations for different stages of formation, and even our fun nites!
As we prepare to receive the Eucharist this evening, let us pray in gratitude for the prophetic voices in our world that have moved us forward, and for the faithfulness to recognize those in our midst.