Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Catholic Mass Readings for April 16 2020, Thursday in the Octave of Easter – Daily Homily

April 16 2020: Thursday in the Octave of Easter Audio Mass Readings – Lectionary: 264

1st Reading – Acts 3:11-26

As the crippled man who had been cured clung to Peter and John,
all the people hurried in amazement toward them
in the portico called “Solomon’s Portico.”
When Peter saw this, he addressed the people,
“You children of Israel, why are you amazed at this,
and why do you look so intently at us
as if we had made him walk by our own power or piety?
The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob,
the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus
whom you handed over and denied in Pilate’s presence,
when he had decided to release him.
You denied the Holy and Righteous One
and asked that a murderer be released to you.
The author of life you put to death,
but God raised him from the dead; of this we are witnesses.
And by faith in his name,
this man, whom you see and know, his name has made strong,
and the faith that comes through it
has given him this perfect health,
in the presence of all of you.
Now I know, brothers and sisters,
that you acted out of ignorance, just as your leaders did;
but God has thus brought to fulfillment
what he had announced beforehand
through the mouth of all the prophets,
that his Christ would suffer.
Repent, therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be wiped away,
and that the Lord may grant you times of refreshment
and send you the Christ already appointed for you, Jesus,
whom heaven must receive until the times of universal restoration
of which God spoke through the mouth
of his holy prophets from of old.
For Moses said:

A prophet like me will the Lord, your God, raise up for you
from among your own kin;
to him you shall listen in all that he may say to you.
Everyone who does not listen to that prophet
will be cut off from the people.

“Moreover, all the prophets who spoke,
from Samuel and those afterwards, also announced these days.
You are the children of the prophets
and of the covenant that God made with your ancestors
when he said to Abraham,
In your offspring all the families of the earth shall be blessed.
For you first, God raised up his servant and sent him to bless you
by turning each of you from your evil ways.”

Responsorial Psalm – Psalms 8:2AB and 5, 6-7, 8-9

R. (2ab) O Lord, our God, how wonderful your name in all the earth!
R. Alleluia.

O LORD, our Lord,
how glorious is your name over all the earth!
What is man that you should be mindful of him,
or the son of man that you should care for him?
R. O Lord, our God, how wonderful your name in all the earth!
R. Alleluia.

You have made him little less than the angels,
and crowned him with glory and honor.
You have given him rule over the works of your hands,
putting all things under his feet.
R. O Lord, our God, how wonderful your name in all the earth!
R. Alleluia.

All sheep and oxen,
yes, and the beasts of the field,
The birds of the air, the fishes of the sea,
and whatever swims the paths of the seas.
R. O Lord, our God, how wonderful your name in all the earth!
R. Alleluia.

Alleluia – Psalms 118:24

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
This is the day the LORD has made;
let us be glad and rejoice in it.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel – Luke 24:35-48

The disciples of Jesus recounted what had taken place along the way,
and how they had come to recognize him in the breaking of bread.

While they were still speaking about this,
he stood in their midst and said to them,
“Peace be with you.”
But they were startled and terrified
and thought that they were seeing a ghost.
Then he said to them, “Why are you troubled?
And why do questions arise in your hearts?
Look at my hands and my feet, that it is I myself.
Touch me and see, because a ghost does not have flesh and bones
as you can see I have.”
And as he said this,
he showed them his hands and his feet.
While they were still incredulous for joy and were amazed,
he asked them, “Have you anything here to eat?”
They gave him a piece of baked fish;
he took it and ate it in front of them.

He said to them,
“These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you,
that everything written about me in the law of Moses
and in the prophets and psalms must be fulfilled.”
Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.
And he said to them,
“Thus it is written that the Christ would suffer
and rise from the dead on the third day
and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins,
would be preached in his name
to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
You are witnesses of these things.”

Tomorrow’s Catholic Daily Readings for April 17 2020, Friday in the Octave of Easter

Catholic Daily Homily – April 16 2020 – Thursday in the Octave of Easter

Today’s Thursday in the Octave of Easter Homily Theme: Incredulous with Joy!

Saint Vincent Ferrer, Priest

While they were still incredulous for joy and were amazed, he asked them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of baked fish; he took it and ate it in front of them. Luke 24:41-43

“Incredulous for joy!” What a great description of the disciples’ reaction to Jesus! To be “incredulous” means that the disciples were not sure what to believe. They were hesitant to believe in what they were seeing. There was Jesus, whom they saw crucified, standing before them with the wounds in His hands and feet. He was talking to them and asked for something to eat. They were in a bit of shock, disbelief and uncertainty.

But the description says that they were incredulous “for joy!” It’s as if they were waiting to explode with joy, they wanted to experience joy in what they were seeing, but something was holding them back. It all seemed to be too good. Was it true? Could it be that Jesus really conquered death and was once again back with them?

This reaction of the disciples reveals an experience that we all have at times when invited by God to enter into His glory and grace. So often, when God invites us closer to Himself, when He invites us to experience the joy of His Resurrection, we react with hesitancy. We can find it hard to actually let ourselves experience the reality of the Resurrection in our lives.

This can happen for many reasons. Discouragement is one cause for our hesitancy to fully embrace the Resurrection. The disciples were deeply discouraged at the death of Jesus. And now that He had risen, and was standing there before them, they were hesitant to let go of that discouragement they let take hold.

So also, we can easily let the weight of the world, our sin, or the sins of others get to us. We can get angry or upset and find ourselves brewing over the apparent problems we face. Taking joy in the Resurrection means we turn our eyes away from those things and look intently at the realities God wants us to focus on. It does no good to become discouraged with the many problems that come our way. Instead, our Lord is regularly calling us to look beyond them to something greater. He is calling us to look to His victory! Looking at His victory is freeing and produces an incredible faith in our lives. And that faith in the Risen Lord will have the effect of a wonderful joy that God wants us to have.

Reflect, today, upon your own reaction to the reality of the Resurrection of our Lord. Spend some time today gazing upon the Risen Lord. Look at His victory. Look at His glory. Look at Him who calls you to a deep faith. With your eyes fixed on Him, all else that tempts you to discouragement simply fades away.

Lord, I do want to gaze upon You. I want to see Your splendor and glory. I want to see You risen from the dead and take great joy and delight in this reality. Help me, dear Lord, to experience the incredible joy that comes from knowing You, our Resurrected Lord. Jesus, I trust in You.
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