Memorial of Saint Dominic, Priest – Year B




Memorial of Saint Dominic, Priest

Today’s Audio Mass Readings – Lectionary: 409

1st Reading – JER 31:1-7

At that time, says the LORD,
I will be the God of all the tribes of Israel,
and they shall be my people.
Thus says the LORD:
The people that escaped the sword
have found favor in the desert.
As Israel comes forward to be given his rest,
the LORD appears to him from afar:
With age-old love I have loved you;
so I have kept my mercy toward you.
Again I will restore you, and you shall be rebuilt,
O virgin Israel;
Carrying your festive tambourines,
you shall go forth dancing with the merrymakers.
Again you shall plant vineyards
on the mountains of Samaria;
those who plant them shall enjoy the fruits.
Yes, a day will come when the watchmen
will call out on Mount Ephraim:
“Rise up, let us go to Zion,
to the LORD, our God.”

For thus says the LORD:
Shout with joy for Jacob,
exult at the head of the nations;
proclaim your praise and say:
The LORD has delivered his people,
the remnant of Israel.

Responsorial Psalm – JEREMIAH 31:10, 11-12AB, 13

R. (see 10d) The Lord will guard us as a shepherd guards his flock.
Hear the word of the LORD, O nations,
proclaim it on distant isles, and say:
He who scattered Israel, now gathers them together,
he guards them as a shepherd his flock.
R. The Lord will guard us as a shepherd guards his flock.
The LORD shall ransom Jacob,
he shall redeem him from the hand of his conqueror.
Shouting, they shall mount the heights of Zion,
they shall come streaming to the LORD’s blessings.
R. The Lord will guard us as a shepherd guards his flock.
Then the virgins shall make merry and dance,
and young men and old as well.
I will turn their mourning into joy.
I will console and gladden them after their sorrows.
R. The Lord will guard us as a shepherd guards his flock

Alleluia – LK 7:16

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
A great prophet has arisen in our midst
and God has visited his people.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel – MT 15: 21-28

At that time Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon.
And behold, a Canaanite woman of that district came and called out,
“Have pity on me, Lord, Son of David!
My daughter is tormented by a demon.”
But he did not say a word in answer to her.
His disciples came and asked him,
“Send her away, for she keeps calling out after us.”
He said in reply,
“I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”
But the woman came and did him homage, saying, “Lord, help me.”
He said in reply,
“It is not right to take the food of the children
and throw it to the dogs.”
She said, “Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps
that fall from the table of their masters.”
Then Jesus said to her in reply,
“O woman, great is your faith!
Let it be done for you as you wish.”
And her daughter was healed from that hour.

Catholic Daily Reflections

Catholic Audio Reflections

Humility + Faith = Mercy

But the woman came and did him homage, saying, “Lord, help me.” He said in reply, “It is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs.” She said, “Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps that fall from the table of their masters.” Matthew 15:25-27

Did Jesus really imply that helping this woman was like throwing food to dogs? Most of us would have taken great offense at what Jesus said as a result of our pride. But what He said was true and was not rude in any way. Jesus obviously cannot be rude. Nonetheless, His statement has the superficial appearance of being rude.

First, let’s look at how His statement is true. Jesus was being asked by this woman to come heal her daughter. Basically, Jesus tells her she is not deserving of this grace in anyway. And that’s true. No more than a dog deserves to be fed from the table do we deserve the grace of God. Though this is a shocking way to say it, Jesus says it this way so as to first illustrate the truth of our sinful condition and unworthiness. And this woman takes it.

Second, Jesus’ statement allows this woman to react with the utmost humility and faith. Her humility is seen in the fact that she does not deny the parallel to a dog eating from the table. Rather, she humbly points out that even dogs eat the scraps. Wow, this is humility! In fact, we can be certain that Jesus spoke to her in this somewhat humiliating way because He knew how humble she was and He knew that she would react by letting her humility shine forth so as to manifest her faith. She was not offended by the humble truth of her unworthiness; rather, she embraced it and also sought out the abundant mercy of God despite her unworthiness.

Humility has the potential to unleash faith, and faith unleashes the mercy and power of God. In the end, Jesus speaks for all to hear, “Oh woman, great is your faith!” Her faith was made manifest and Jesus seized the opportunity to honor her for that humble faith.

Reflect, today, upon your own humility before God. How would you have reacted if Jesus spoke this way to you? Would you have been humble enough to acknowledge your unworthiness? If so, would you also have enough faith to cry out for God’s mercy despite your unworthiness? These wonderful qualities go hand in hand (humility and faith) and unleash the mercy of God!

Lord, I am unworthy. Help me to see that. Help me to see that I do not deserve Your grace in my life. But in that humble truth, may I also recognize Your abundance of mercy and never fear to call upon You for mercy. Jesus, I trust in You.

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