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Sunday, March 6th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Luke 15:1-3.11-32.


Fourth Sunday of Lent (Laetare) – Year C

6 March 2016

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ  

‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you;

I no longer deserve to be called your son.’

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Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 15:1-3.11-32.

Tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to listen to Jesus,
but the Pharisees and scribes began to complain, saying, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”
So to them he addressed this parable.
Then he said, “A man had two sons,
and the younger son said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of your estate that should come to me.’ So the father divided the property between them.
After a few days, the younger son collected all his belongings and set off to a distant country where he squandered his inheritance on a life of dissipation.
When he had freely spent everything, a severe famine struck that country, and he found himself in dire need.
So he hired himself out to one of the local citizens who sent him to his farm to tend the swine.
And he longed to eat his fill of the pods on which the swine fed, but nobody gave him any.
Coming to his senses he thought, ‘How many of my father’s hired workers have more than enough food to eat, but here am I, dying from hunger.
I shall get up and go to my father and I shall say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you.
I no longer deserve to be called your son; treat me as you would treat one of your hired workers.”‘
So he got up and went back to his father. While he was still a long way off, his father caught sight of him, and was filled with compassion. He ran to his son, embraced him and kissed him.
His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you; I no longer deserve to be called your son.’
But his father ordered his servants, ‘Quickly bring the finest robe and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.
Take the fattened calf and slaughter it. Then let us celebrate with a feast,
because this son of mine was dead, and has come to life again; he was lost, and has been found.’ Then the celebration began.
Now the older son had been out in the field and, on his way back, as he neared the house, he heard the sound of music and dancing.
He called one of the servants and asked what this might mean.
The servant said to him, ‘Your brother has returned and your father has slaughtered the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’
He became angry, and when he refused to enter the house, his father came out and pleaded with him.
He said to his father in reply, ‘Look, all these years I served you and not once did I disobey your orders; yet you never gave me even a young goat to feast on with my friends.
But when your son returns who swallowed up your property with prostitutes, for him you slaughter the fattened calf.’
He said to him, ‘My son, you are here with me always; everything I have is yours.
But now we must celebrate and rejoice, because your brother was dead and has come to life again; he was lost and has been found.'”

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

Image: Biblehub

SUNDAY MASS – Catholic Mass – March 6, 2016

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Fourth Sunday of Lent (Laetare) – Year C

6 March 2016

Commentary of the day

Saint Augustine (354-430),

Bishop of Hippo (North Africa) and Doctor of the Church
A Commentary on the Psalms, Ps 139[138], 5-6; CCL 40, 1992-1993 (©Friends of Henry Ashworth, alt.)

“While he was still a long way off, his father caught sight of him”

      “O Lord, you have read my thoughts from afar; you have marked my path and my journey’s end; you have foreseen all my ways.” In other words, while I am still a pilgrim and have not yet reached my true country, my thoughts are an open book to you. Think of the younger son of the parable… Not so the elder son; he stayed at home and worked in the fields, representing those holy men of the Old Testament who carried out the duties imposed by the law and obeyed its precepts.

But the rest of the human race by its lapse into idolatry, had left for a distant country. Nothing, in fact, re moves us further from the God who made us than the false gods we make! for ourselves.
The younger son, then, left for a distant country, taking his money with him, and, as the gospel tells us, he squandered it… When he was worn out by hard labor, affliction, and want, his thoughts turned to his father, and he made up his mind to return to him. “I will arise,” he said, “and go to my father”… But is not he whom I have forsaken everywhere? “You have read my thoughts from afar.” In the gospel story the Lord tells us that the boy’s father went out to meet him because he had read his thoughts from afar, he had marked all his paths. What was this path but the ill-chosen road which the boy took when he left his father, furtively trying to escape observation and punishment? Would he have been worn out by hardship or sent to feed pigs unless his father had wanted him to be punished in his absence so that he could welcome him on his return?…

So he was caught like a runaway slave, overtaken by the well-deserved chastisement of God who punishes us for our unlawful desires, no matter where we go or how far we travel. So, like a slave caught on the run, the son says: “You have marked my path and seen all my ways.” However long my path, it could not hide me from your eyes. I had walked a great distance but you were there at my destination. Before I had even entered, before I had even set out, you saw it all beforehand. And you allowed me to follow my paths in hard labor so that, if I should not want to labor any more, I might return to your ways… I confess my sin before you: I went my own way and wandered far from you; I left you with whom my best interests lay, and it was for my own good that everything went wrong for me without you, for if all had gone well for me without you, the chances are that I would never have returned to you.

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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Fourth Sunday of Lent (Laetare) – Year C

6 March 2016

Saint of the day

St. Colette, Virgin (+ 1447)

Santa_Coletta-o_Colette-di_Corbie_A

SAINT COLETTE
Virgin
(+ 1447)

        After a holy childhood, Colette joined a society of devout women called the Beguines; but not finding their state sufficiently austere, she entered the Third Order of St. Francis, and lived in a hut near her parish church of Corbie in Picardy.

        Here she had passed four years of extraordinary penance when St. Francis, in a vision, bade her undertake the reform of her Order, then much relaxed. Armed with due authority, she established her reform throughout a large part of Europe, and, in spite of the most violent opposition, founded seventeen convents of the strict observance.

        By the same wonderful prudence she assisted in healing the great schism which then afflicted. the Church. The Fathers in council at Constance were in doubt how to deal with the three claimants to the tiara-John XXIII., Benedict XIII., and Gregory XII. At this crisis Colette, together with St. Vincent Ferrer, wrote to the Fathers to depose Benedict XIII., who alone refused his consent to a new election. This was done, and Martin V. was elected, to the great good of the Church.

        Colette equally assisted the Council of Basle by her advice and prayers; and when, later, God revealed to her the spirit ‘ of revolt that was rising, she warned the bishops and legates to retire from the council.

        St. Colette never ceased to pray for the Church, while the devils, in turn, never ceased to assault her. They swarmed round her as hideous insects, buzzing and stinging her tender skin. They brought into her cell the decaying corpses of public criminals, and assuming themselves monstrous forms struck her savage blows; or they would appear in the most seductive guise, and tempt her by many deceits to sin. St. Colette once complained to Our Lord that the demons prevented her from praying. “Cease, then,” said the devil to her, “your prayers to the great Master of the Church, and we will cease to torment you; for you torment us more by your prayers than we do you.” Yet the virgin of Christ triumphed alike over their threats and their allurements, and said she would count that day the unhappiest of her life in which she suffered nothing for her God.

        She died March 6, 1447, in a transport of intercession for sinners and the Church.

Lives of the Saints, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. [1894]

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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THANK YOU

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“Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature.”

Mark 16:15-20

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“I am with you always, until the end of the age.”

Matthew 28:20.

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He guides me in right paths
for his name’s sake.

Even though I walk in the dark valley
I fear no evil; for you are at my side
with your rod and your staff
that give me courage.

Psalms 23(22):1-3a.3b-4.5.6. 

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Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful

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