Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time 2020: Cover art, Column, and Prayers of the Faithful

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Bulletin Column

Dear Believers in The Treasure,

Matthew 13: 44-52, uncovers for us a rich, profound, and unimaginable treasure, The Kingdom of God. Today’s text invites us into another image of the Kingdom of God, a follow up from last Sunday. I love this image of the Kingdom. The treasure is so often lost on us. Sometimes we ignore the real meaning of our lives and seek purpose and love elsewhere. Sometimes we do not even realize that the spiritual journey has at its core…love.

This may seem like a weird question, but what is the spiritual journey for? Why do we pray? We sometimes get caught up thinking the spiritual journey is for our own personal redemption in Christ. It can become a life insurance policy that will get us to the pearly gates. It becomes a ticket we purchase on earth to reserve a seat at the party of heaven. So often we think the journey is to stay on a certain path that is outlined for us and not to veer off the road, lest we don’t get our heavenly reward.

However, the spiritual journey here on earth is to uncover, to reveal, to enter into the mystery, of love. This love forms our lives, motivates our actions and helps heal the world. The Kingdom is revealed to us in our baptism. The well of our baptismal lives is deep, never emptying, and profound. The riches we seek are in front of us. The treasure in the field is buried before our very eyes. The love that God has for us is unveiled in the mystical journey of prayer, silence, the sacraments of the Church, and in a heart that is curious.

Curiosity is a gift from God. The older I get, the more I realize that the spiritual journey stems from a curious heart that knows it does not possess all the answers. So often we are given answers to questions we don’t even ask. We are given a set of rules and regulations that choke the human heart.

When I was a young religious, I remember seeking out the stories of our men who were missionaries or who served in various ministries in the United States. Holy Cross priests and brothers from around the world would come to the seminary for more education or renewal. I remember, along with my classmates, sipping breakfast coffee with these holy men and listening attentively. We listened to stories that seemed unimaginable about people in utter poverty or those in political turmoil from overthrown governments. They spoke not only foreign languages, but they spoke the stories from their people. These stories became treasures for me. Their stories opened up my life to become curious about God and the role of the Church. Their stories served as fuel for my commitment of prayer and service within the Church.

The more I look back, the more I realize that curiosity is a spiritual shovel. The more we pursue love and life; the more God is revealed to us. Curiosity ultimately reveals God’s message here on earth. We are loved. We are given purpose, meaning and integrity now under heaven. The journey to find God is deep, the field is large, the purpose is to live life for others. Curiosity also means we make mistakes, sometimes we quit digging, sometimes we lose our way, and sometimes we get resentful and often we get hurt. However, prayer with love and curiosity attached, becomes our life work, and our life mission.  This is the goal for what it means to be human. Prayer becomes the foundation for peace among people, reconciliation among enemies, and hope for the lost and forgotten in our society. The treasure is given to us to give others, the treasure is a way of life and a way to share the very purpose of Jesus’ passion, death and resurrection.

I so desire to keep going. I so want the pearl of great price and the treasure in the field of my heart. I know it is just behind my selfishness and obstinance. I want to unearth my pride and to hold the miracle of God’s love for me and the world in my tired heart. I would sell everything for that.

The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in a field, which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.”

 God give you peace,

Fr. Ron

 

Prayers of the Faithful

For our bishops and all who lead us in faith, that their lives of prayer may bring us wisdom, truth, and a new understanding of gospel peace.

We pray to the Lord.

For our struggling families, for the unemployed, for those who face the consequences of addiction, that we may offer the hope of the gospel.

We pray to the Lord.

For those who are discouraged by life’s stress and misfortune, that God may offer consolation and offer us the pearl of justice.

We pray to the Lord.

For an end of war, violence and hatred, that God may bring us peace in every land and nation.

We pray to the Lord.

For our children who question their futures, for our grandparents who live in fear, for all those we love, that God may bring us together in harmony.

We pray to the Lord.

For our beloved dead. In this Mass we pray for…

We pray to the Lord.

 

 

 

 

2 thoughts on “Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time 2020: Cover art, Column, and Prayers of the Faithful

  1. A beautiful sermon. Prayer, Love and Seek everyday is a new day and has more Love to come as we pray and seek. Thank you Father Ron for helping us to seek the Pearl and the desire to never let go even when we fail their is mercy to lift us up and keep searching.

  2. Wonderful reflections, Fr. Ron, the parables of Our Lord guide us in the way of faith, hope and love. God bless you!

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