Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Mt 12:46-50 Nothing Against Mary


Tuesday of the Sixteenth Week In Ordinary Time

(Click here for readings)

While Jesus was speaking to the crowds, his mother and his brothers appeared outside, wishing to speak with him.  Someone told him, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, asking to speak with you.”  But he said in reply… “Who is my mother?  Who are my brothers? And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers.  For whoever does the will of my heavenly Father is my brother, and sister, and mother.”
Unlike royalty, you are not born into Christianity.  You must be born from above. 
Unlike the royals, you are not a Christian by blood.  You become a Christian by grace and faith. 
Who is my mother?  Who are my brothers?    Unlike Judaism and British royalty, blood relations are of little to no significance in Christianity.  We are united by faith.  This is extremely liberating.  We are not obliged to believe; we are not thrown to the throne; we are not a people of a particular race or tribe.  We are believers in Jesus Christ. 
Yesterday I heard on the news that one of the constitutional duties of the Royal family is to have children.  What???  I couldn’t believe my ears!  It’s a constitutional duty for them to have children???  How ridiculous!  And yet, everyone at Good Morning America nodded in agreement that it was necessary for the royals to continue their lineage and have a legitimate successor.
No one questioned it.  How could they?  It was their “constitutional duty."
But when the Catholic Church tells her members that it is their God-given duty to have children, people go crazy.  They throw a fit!  Their world is turned upside down!  How dare they tell us that we must have children!  Cries of intolerance erupt.  Women are horrified of the thought.  Men are aghast at the idea of having to grow up and be responsible.  Who are they to tell us that we should have children! What right do they have to tell us what is and isn’t God-given or even God’s will!
Aren’t you amused at the double standards?  I once was, but now I’m not.  I once was lost but now I’m found. Was blind but now I see.  Amazing Grace!
Whoever does the will of my heavenly Father is my brother.  Not too long ago, a man came to me and told me that a woman came knocking on his parent’s door.  It turns out that the woman was the biological daughter of his father.  After years of searching, she found him.  She wanted to know him.  She wanted to establish contact with him.  The man told me that his father was unaware of her existence.  He didn’t know her.  He never knew of her.  Yet, this woman, was intent on “reestablishing” contact with his father.  When the son asked this grown woman of nearly forty years why she wanted to meet him, she replied, “He’s my dad.” 
In reply, the son said: “But what about the man who took care of you your entire life?  What about him?  Isn’t he your dad?”  Everything seemed awfully fishy to him, and for good reason.  After some research and time, he discovered that this woman was no longer on speaking terms with her mother or step-father.
When I heard this story, I didn’t feel bad for the woman or for her biological father, but for the father; that is, the father who adopted her, brought her up as if she were his own flesh and blood, took care of her and paid all her bills for years and years.  And this is what he got?
Like us, the Lord is not so much interested in the laws of nature.  Rather, He is very much interested in the laws of love.  He’s not so much interested in revealing to us how the world was made.  He’s much more interested in revealing to us why it was made.  There’s nothing strange in this.  Painters are like this.  Writers are like this.  Even fathers and mothers are like this.  They aren’t so much interested in the mechanics of their children.  Instead, they are interested in the decisions they make.
Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him. 

9 comments:

  1. Father Alfonse - As readers, we do not know all the details of your conversation with the father and his biological daughter. But, could there be a very good reason why this woman decided to break ties with the mother and stepfather? Maybe it involved abuse, neglect, or religious differences? I'd like to give the woman the benefit of the doubt that she didn't disconnect her ties foolishly. I certainly hope this "biological father" made an effort to welcome his daughter into his life even if it wasn't under the best of circumstances....

    As for the double standard between the Royal family's constitutional duty to have children and the Catholic Church "God-given duty" to have children, I'm not at all surprised. It seems ok for the wealthy, privileged and elite to produce offspring. But, not acceptable for the substandard to reproduce.(I think of Margaret Sanger and her eugenics - exterminate "the human weeds.")

    I must confess I am one of those Catholic women who has decided not to have children. I've always felt uncomfortable with the fact the Church promotes procreation. I feel as a single lay woman without children (by choice) I am somehow substandard. Does the Church believe people with children are somehow better than people without? Are married Catholics with children "royalty" and single Catholics not?

    I am very accepting of others who decide to have large families. I think this is a blessing and my prayers go out to them. I'm not at all against promoting marriage and children. I just feel a little left out that I'm not practicing the preferred Catholic teaching - married life and a family.

    Blessings,

    -Jennifer

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    1. Jennifer - I'm not sure where in the Church doctrine it states that everyone MUST get married and have children. Yes, it is expected that married couples have children, but that is in fact up to our Lord. So I don't quite understand your statement. Having children is all but glamarous. There are lots of single adults with no children and if this is what our Lord is calling you/them to, then I think it's a beautiful vocation. I can't imagine anyone would be judgemental of that.

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  2. I don't know about the church specifically, but some of those other sects and the quiverfull movement take the "duty" too far.

    How about those that cannot have children though?

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  3. God bless you my dearest Jennifer :)

    I feel a little left out that I'm not practicing the preferred Catholic teaching - married life and a family.

    You know what ...............!! I feel the same way here ;( like my practicing Catholic friends do not except me, because my family is not complete.......there is me, my 4 " babies" , but there is no husband or father figure. I pray everyday I do my best in motherly role and a devote catholic women role

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  4. Oh, Cristina, you are such a sweet young woman. I admire the enthusiasm and joy in your posts! I pray that you are able to take care of your four babies without too much of a burden. I know it must be so difficult! You are in prayers.

    One of the reasons I've stayed away from this blog for so many months is because I felt my thoughts as a single women weren't good. I was distracting people from meditating on Father Alfonse's words! I'm nobody compared to an intelligent and charismatic priest.

    Blessings,

    -Jennifer

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    1. oh Jennifer ! you are very intelligent and I very much admire your wisdom -

      I can hear you all day long, because I can relate to you as catholic women and agree with most of your views and opinions.

      I love hearing Father Alfonse - " just cause " lol! Well! of course he is bright, wise , intelligent and charismatic Priest

      I like to compare and contract - both of you, whenever father Alfonse stated something on his blog and Jennifer " beautiful point of view " - YOU both do not sugar coats your opinions ,you both go Straight to the Point - and I LOVE that ! !

      My mother is the same way, sometime I have to tell her to stop talking that way. I get a bit scared she may cause trouble, LOL!! and then I realize that "she is who she is" and if I had the right words and know how to express myself - i would be the same way

      it is good to be single - You learn more and you discover, who you really ARE in this world we live in :)

      God bless and Love both of " Y'ALL very much " ;)

      Cristina

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    2. my typo : "compare and contrast" LOL

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  5. Oh please!!!

    The Lord must be upset with me because I am single as well. 😳

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    1. you just special Father Alfonse :) LOL!

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