The New Gasparian
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A journal dedicated to the life and mission of St. Gaspar del Bufalo, and to a life lived in response to the call and the cry of the Most Precious Blood of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Our on-going mission is to share good news of hope and communion.

Sunday, March 23, 2003
Monday of Week Three

The Readings
2 Kings 5:1 15 Cure of Naaman, leper
Ps 42 Athirst is my soul for the living God. When shall I go and behold the face of God.
Luke 4:24 30 No prophet accepted in his hometown. ...many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, none of them cleansed except Naaman, the Syrian.

St. Gaspar del Bufalo
"Assiduous prayers, etc. and courage through the merits of the divine Blood. The works of God are the fruit of tears and of suffering. In short, let us serve God and even though troubled by things, let us glory in the crosses through which we will attain salvation.

"So prayers. I realize that perfection is not attained in a single day, but if the sick person pays no attention to the remedies for a cure, nor does he bother to listen to the advice that respectfully I keep giving him, what are we to do?

Naaman had expectations of the healing powers of the prophet Elijah. He wanted a display of power, but his expectations were not fulfilled. The people of Jesus time had expectations of the kind of Messiah they were waiting for, but Jesus took the part of the poor and the foreigner, and so their expectations were not met.

Often in our relationships with other people we approach them with our expectations rather than meeting them as they are. Married people sometimes fall in love with their ideal spouse and their hopes and dreams before discovering the person as they truly are. Religious men and women do the same thing with their communities.

Experience then sometimes provides a disappointment for us, when people do not meet our expectations. On hearing Jesus as he is, they rose up an attempted to kill him. We are challenged too to see if we approach Jesus as he is in himself, or if we have developed expectations that govern this relationship. St. Gaspar calls us to a listening posture, and even if the encounter provides an experience of the cross we are to glory in that cross as a way to salvation.

• How can I be more open to other people as they are?
• Where might I allow my friends or spouse to be different from my expectations.
• What freedom must I have to allow my friends to change?

posted by Fr. Jeffrey Keyes, C.PP.S. on 11:59 PM link
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Our Weapon

"We Christians have weapons too," the cardinal told the dictator.

posted by Fr. Jeffrey Keyes, C.PP.S. on 4:34 PM link
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Third Sunday of Lent (B)

The Readings
Click here

St. Gaspar
With pleasure did I receive your most esteemed letter and I note in it the ever admirable working of the grace of God in your heart which is a temple of the Lord. It cannot be denied that Almighty God loves to beautify more and more that mystical temple to the glory of his name. You are the temple of God The entranceway of that temple is made of a mystical precious metal, and the devil is prohibited from making any access therein.

That entranceway is so well constructed that it will not be shaken by the attacks of the enemy. The sides are solid walls made of very durable bricks of different colors and perfectly shaped. It is a signification of an aggregate of virtues which maintain the soul dedicated in its service to God. The ceiling of this temple is entirely gilded with gold; and this symbolizes the very precious work of the holy love of God, as well as its varied operations. In this temple, there are windows which admit the holy light of celestial inspirations, and because of this, that peace is enjoyed which forms in the soul a foretaste of paradise. Therein does God find his delight. The work that has gone into the construction of this temple, its adornments, makes it similar to a mystical wine cellar where, in silence and active contemplation, one builds heavenward.

Jesus was a pious Jew who observed the law and the temple. He also broke with the law and the temple because he is beyond them. So we listen to not just what he says. We listen to who he is. The ancient prophet spoke of a time when the Lord would come to his temple and there would be no need of sacrifices or money changers. Jesus is saying that the time is now. The relationship has changed. It is not simply that the Lord has come to his temple. He IS the temple. If he is the temple the relationship with God is entirely remade, and human nature is raised to an incredible destiny. God has visited his people and is present to them in a whole new way.

So are we stuck in the old ways? Are we still trying to earn heaven? Can we not be open enough to accept this gift? It is time for us to develop a new image of our self as a temple of the Lord.

• How might I consider my self as a dwelling place for God?
• What must I let go of in order to receive his gift?
• How has lent given me a new vision of myself?

posted by Fr. Jeffrey Keyes, C.PP.S. on 12:51 AM link
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