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Sunday, July 23rd. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 13:24-43.


Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

23 July 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ 

“The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed

that a person took and sowed in a field.

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 13:24-43.

Jesus proposed a parable to the crowds. “The kingdom of heaven may be likened to a man who sowed good seed in his field.
While everyone was asleep his enemy came and sowed weeds all through the wheat, and then went off.
When the crop grew and bore fruit, the weeds appeared as well.
The slaves of the householder came to him and said, ‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? Where have the weeds come from?’
He answered, ‘An enemy has done this.’ His slaves said to him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’
He replied, ‘No, if you pull up the weeds you might uproot the wheat along with them.
Let them grow together until harvest; then at harvest time I will say to the harvesters, “First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles for burning; but gather the wheat into my barn.”‘”
He proposed another parable to them. “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that a person took and sowed in a field.
It is the smallest of all the seeds, yet when full-grown it is the largest of plants. It becomes a large bush, and the ‘birds of the sky come and dwell in its branches.'”
He spoke to them another parable. “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed with three measures of wheat flour until the whole batch was leavened.”
All these things Jesus spoke to the crowds in parables. He spoke to them only in parables,
to fulfill what had been said through the prophet: “I will open my mouth in parables, I will announce what has lain hidden from the foundation of the world.”
Then, dismissing the crowds, he went into the house. His disciples approached him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.”
He said in reply, “He who sows good seed is the Son of Man,
the field is the world, the good seed the children of the kingdom. The weeds are the children of the evil one,
and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels.
Just as weeds are collected and burned (up) with fire, so will it be at the end of the age.
The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his kingdom all who cause others to sin and all evildoers.
They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.
Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears ought to hear.”

 

Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB
©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017
Image: From Bible Hub

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THANK YOU

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Toronto,

Toronto, Canada.

YOUTUBE

of

The Sunday Mass – 16th Sunday in Ordinary Time

(July 23, 2017)

Presider: Rev. Peter Jae Choi

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Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

23 July 2017

Commentary of the day

Homily attributed to Saint Macarius of Egypt

(?-390),

monk
Spiritual homilies, no.51

‘An enemy has done this.’

I am writing to you, my brothers, so you might know that, since the day when Adam was created until the end of the world, the Evil One wages war against the saints without respite (Rev 13,7)… They are few, however, who realize that this destroyer of souls lives with them inside their bodies, close to the soul. It is there that they feel distress and there is no one on earth to comfort them. That is why they look to heaven and place all their expectation there, waiting to receive something within themselves. And by means of this strength and thanks to this armor of the Spirit (Eph 6,13), they shall overcome. For truly, it is from heaven that they acquire a strength hidden from the eyes of the flesh. So long as they seek God with all their heart, God’s strength constantly comes in secret to their assistance… It is precisely because they are sensitive to their weakness and are unable to overcome that they so ardently beg for God’s armor and, thus clothed for the fight with the weapons of the Spirit (Eph 6,13), they become victorious…

You should know, then, beloved brethren, that in all those who have prepared their soul to provide good soil for the heavenly sowing, the enemy makes haste to sow his tares… Know also that those who do not seek the Lord with all their heart are not tempted by Satan in so manifest a way; rather, it is in hidden ways and more by trickery that he tries… to push them away from God.

But now, brothers, take heart and don’t be afraid of anything. Don’t allow yourselves to be frightened by the imaginations stirred up by the enemy. Don’t give in to a confused restlessness in prayer by multiplying unnecessary petitions, but receive the Lord’s grace with contrition and repentance… Take heart, be comforted, hold fast, concern yourselves with your souls, persevere in prayer with all zeal… For all those who seek God in truth will receive divine strength in their soul and, in receiving this heavenly unction, they will feel within themselves the taste and sweetness of the world to come. May the peace of the Lord, that peace which was with all the holy fathers and kept them safe from every temptation, be also with you.

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

23 July 2017

Saints of the day

St. Bridget of Sweden

(1304-1373)

SAINT BRIDGET OF SWEDEN
Patron saint of Sweden and co-patron of Europe
(1304-1373)

        St. Bridget was born of the Swedish royal family, in 1304. In obedience to her father, she was married to Prince Ulpho of Sweden, and became the mother of eight children, one of whom, Catherine, is honored as a Saint.

        After some years she and her husband separated by mutual consent. He entered the Cistercian Order, and Bridget founded the Order of St. Saviour, in the Abbey of Wastein, in Sweden.

        In 1344 she became a widow, and thenceforth received a series of the most sublime revelations, all of which she scrupulously submitted to the judgment of her confessor. By the command of Our Lord, Bridget went on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and amidst the very scenes of the Passion was further instructed in the sacred mysteries.

        She died in 1373.

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

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

23 July 2017

Saints of the day

Bl. Vasil’ Hopko,

Bishop and martyr

(† 1976)

Blessed Vasiľ Hopko
(1904-1976)
Bishop and martyr

        Vasil’ Hopko was born on April 21, 1904 in Hrabské, a small village in eastern Slovakia. His father died when he was 1 year old, leaving his mother alone to care for the child. Vasil’s mother left for the United States in 1908 to find work, putting Vasil’ under the care of his grandfather. When the boy was 7, he went to live with his uncle, Demeter Petrenko, a Greek-Catholic priest.

       His uncle’s example awakened in Vasil’ a call to the priesthood, and in 1923 he decided to enter the Greek-Catholic Seminary of Presov. He was ordained a priest on February 3, 1929 and was entrusted with the pastoral care of the Greek-Catholic faithful in Prague. Here, he was involved in many different activities:  work with youth, the elderly, the unemployed and orphans. Fr Vasil’ founded the Movement of Greek-Catholic Students and the Greek-Catholic Youth Union, and contributed to the building of the city’s Greek-Catholic parish, becoming its priest. It was also in Prague that, after 22 years, the young priest met his mother who had returned from the United States.

        In 1936, Fr Vasil’ returned to Slovakia where he served as spiritual father in the Greek-Catholic Seminary of Presov. In 1941, he was appointed as secretary of the Bishop’s Curia, and he became professor of moral and pastoral theology at the Theological Faculty in Presov in 1943. He also found free moments to write and publish various works and became the first editor of the magazine Blahovistnik (The Gospel Messenger).

        After World War II, the Czechoslovakian Republic fell under a growing Soviet Bolshevik and atheist influence. Foreseeing a systematic “Sovietization” and the resulting totalitarian-atheistic Marxism, Bishop Gojdic of Presov asked the Holy See for an Auxiliary Bishop to help him defend against the attacks on the Greek-Catholic faithful and the Church. Fr Vasil’ became the newly-appointed Auxiliary Bishop and was ordained on May 11, 1947. He helped the Bishop greatly, preparing the people for hard times on the horizon.

        Little by little the Czechoslovakian Communist Party prepared for the violent elimination of the Greek-Catholic Church in its nation. On April 28, 1950, the Communists carried out their work of “liquidation” during the so-called “Council of Presov”, held without the presence of Bishops. Here they declared that the Greek-Catholic Church of Czechoslovakia no longer existed and that all its priests, faithful and churches were to be transferred over to the Orthodox Church. Bishops Gojdic and Hopko were arrested.

        Following the arrest, Bishop Hopko underwent drastic interrogation and torture so he would deny his faith and confess to fabricated accusations. On October 24, 1951, after more than a year of cruel and diabolic interrogation, he was condemned by the State Court to 15 years in prison and a loss of all civil rights for 10 years. While in prison, in addition to the torture he received, he was given small doses of arsenic which caused a chronic poisoning, which was later verified by an analysis of his bones.

        On May 12, 1964 he was released from prison for health reasons. After years of mistreatment, the Bishop suffered from grave physical ailments and mental depression caused by the constant torture and inhuman treatment. Notwithstanding all this, he continued to contribute actively to the resurgence of the Greek-Catholic Church.

        On June 13, 1968, the renewal of the Greek-Catholic Church of Czechoslovakia was re-estabilized after 18 years of open persecution. From 1968, Bishop Hopko began living in Presov; on December 20, 1968, Pope Paul VI confirmed his appointment as Auxiliary Bishop for all Greek-Catholic faithful in Czechoslovakia. He carried out this responsibility with great care, encouraging the faithful and ordaining priests.

        Bishop Hopko died on July 23, 1976 in Presov. He made his own the words of Bishop Gojdic:  “For me, it is not important if I die in the Bishop’s Palace or in prison; what matters is entering into Paradise”.

        He was beatified by Pope John Paul II on September 14, 2003 at Bratislava.

– Copyright © Libreria Editrice Vaticana

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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