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Thirty-Second Sunday of the Year (B)

1 Kgs 17:10-16; Psalm 103; Heb 9:24-28; Mk 12:38-44

God’s immeasurable generosity can be the only context within which to hear these wonderful, familiar readings.  For the One who rescues us from death by offering his life for us and to us – our high priest – is the presence of God’s generosity and as we are nourished in this celebration of the Eucharist joining ourselves to Him in offering His prayer to the Father, we are strengthened to be givers after the pattern of Jesus, in communion with both the widows mentioned in the scriptures this morning.  Our monastic tradition teaches us that we are created in the image and likeness of God – the giver – who inspires the poor widow of our first reading to respond to Elijah’s request to be fed by sharing the little she has.  Similarly out of love for God, the widow of the temple gives her two small copper coins and receives recognition from our Lord who tells us she has given more than the others for she gave not from her surplus but from her meager budget – “all that she had” – nothing left over.

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Brother Robert’s Entrance Into Novitiate. 10/31/15 given by Abbot Stan

The troparion we sang at Vespers, Brother Robert, is the first song I heard of the music of our monastery of Tamié in the French Alps. Our Brother Conrad gave it to me on a cassette he had in 1980 to help me prepare for the visit I was to make to Tamié later in the year. The song gave me goose bumps that first time I heard it; it still gives me goose bumps every time we sing it now. It contains an image that has haunted me for over thirty-five years and continues to inspire me and move me. The image of this grand mosaic with thousands of small pieces which, in the end, make up a single picture, the glorious Christ.

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Twenty-third Sunday of the Year (B)

Is 35:4-7; Psalm 145; Jas 2:1-5; Mk 7:31-37

The promises of the first reading are arresting, consoling, comforting, encouraging and — fulfilled in Jesus Christ.  We don’t have to take time over a Christology lesson here.  The first reading and gospel make us feel we are at Christmas Eve mass at Mepkin with the cornucopia of promise and fulfillment readings that usher us into our celebration of Jesus’ nativity!!  And so our souls give praise to God for loving us and acting in our behalf as demonstrated in Jesus’ birth, ministry, passion, death, resurrection, ascension and sending forth the Spirit.

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