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Greetings on this the Friday of the Nineteenth Week in Ordinary Time
Readings: Jos 24:1-13; PS 136:1-3, 16-18, 21-22 and 24; Mt 19:3-12
Notes: Not all Pharisees were bad people. Actually most were good people. It was the leadership that was corrupt and without merit. Jesus confronted the leadership of Pharisees (and Sadducees but they were not the dominant power).

So when you read a Tweet or Blog entry from me bashing Republicans, it should be understood the same way. Stop identifying with bad people. The Republican party is the Insurrection Party. It has lost its moral authority to lead. Change the party leadership and I will not speak the necessary truth about them.

First reading
In our first reading today we are reminded by the Lord by way of Joshua just how much he has done for us through the ages. History, our history too, is filled with stories of conquest, defeat, terror and joy. We worked very hard for what we have however little or much. We worry, we hope and we dream.

  • How many of you look forward to marriage, children, grandchildren?
  • How many have lost loved ones?
  • How many face our own mortality in a most concrete way?

All these things the Lord knows and has always been present with you.
We do need to keep perspective.

“I gave you a land that you had not tilled
and cities that you had not built, to dwell in;
you have eaten of vineyards and olive groves
which you did not plant.”

All we are and have is kept in the loving hands of God. All are gifts.

Responsorial Psalm
His mercy endures forever.

When I teach about faith I use this psalm to make scripture pop for people.
I split the class in two and have a side A and side B.
Then they get verse and response.
We do it a second time switching the sides B to A.

Tyr it with someone today! Maybe your spouse?

          Side A                                  Side B
Give thanks to the Lord for he is good.    His Mercy endures forever.
Give thanks to the God of gods.            His Mercy endures forever.
Give thanks to the Lord of lords.          His Mercy endures forever.
Who led his people through the wilderness. His Mercy endures forever.
Who smote great kings.                     His Mercy endures forever.
And slew powerful kings.                   His Mercy endures forever.
And made their land a heritage.            His Mercy endures forever.
The heritage of Israel his servant.        His Mercy endures forever.
And freed us from our foes.                His Mercy endures forever.
ADD LINES FOR YOUR FAMILY HISTORY.         His Mercy endures forever.
ADD LINES FOR YOUR FAMILY HISTORY.         His Mercy endures forever.          

Alleluia Verse
Receive the word of god, not as the word of men,
but, as it truly is, the word of God.

I hope you come to understand that the Eternal One is transcendent and wants to speak and be heard.

Gospel Portion
Is it any wonder that the Church follows a two day gospel portion with teaching on forgiveness before she talks about marriage?
Sense a connection (grins)?

Today we focus on forgiveness.
This reflection recognizes but does not address the extremes of behaviors or radical circumstances which thankfully are not the norm.

In the overall, without forgiveness no marriage survives.

He said to them, “Because of the hardness of your hearts
Moses allowed you to divorce your wives,
but from the beginning it was not so.

Peace be with you,
Deacon Gerry

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