Has the 'culture of death' invaded our lives? Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Hensley   
Sunday, Feb. 29, 2015
Second Sunday of Lent

Genesis 22:1-2, 9a, 10-13, 15-18

Psalm 116:10, 15-19

Romans 8:31b-34

Mark 9:2-10

I have long understood that what God asks of Abraham, the sacrifice of his own son, born long after any child was expected — or even thought possible — was a foreshadowing of God offering his only Son Jesus for us all.

What God is asking in Genesis 22 seems insane and impossible — but only if he were not both willing and planning to do the same.

When Abraham is on the verge of killing his long-awaited son, God intervenes and provides a ram caught in the bushes nearby.

All of this, of course, anticipates the perfect sacrifice the Father would offer in Jesus.

In the last few days, I have connected with an Indonesian priest serving the faithful in Russia.

He left his tropical home where he received his formation as a Society of the Divine Word priest to minister in the sub-Arctic cold of Russia.

The photos he shared on Facebook showed the bright blue Russian church in the snow-covered area where he serves.

For a missionary priest from Indonesia to serve in such a place is an act of sacrifice reminiscent of that asked of our father in faith, Abraham.

It may seem to Fr. Milto Seran like a bit part in the long road of salvation history, but to those of us who have been asked so much less, it seems a major role.

The central role in this drama of salvation is that of our Lord Jesus who is revealed to his disciples Peter, James, and John in the passage from today’s Gospel in Mark 9.

Jesus’ relation to the Father is revealed as he is transfigured on a high mountain where he shines brighter than anything on earth could shine, and God gives his followers the ultimate message demanding our attention and obedience: “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.” No exclamation points needed, but imagine the majesty of the voice.

This column is offered in cooperation with The North Texas Catholic of Fort Worth, Texas.

Daily Scripture Readings Print E-mail
Sunday, Sep. 01, 2013 -- 10:21 AM
Click here to view or subscribe to the daily
Scripture readings from the United States Conference
of Catholic Bishops website.
Pope's Prayer Intentions: February 2015 Print E-mail
February Universal Intention

Prisoners. That prisoners, especially the young, may be able to rebuild lives of dignity.

February Evangelization Intention
Separated Spouses. That married people who are separated may find welcome and support in the Christian community.
Holy Days of Obligation Print E-mail

The following are Holy Days of Obligation for 2015.

Holy Days of Obligation Description
Wednesday, Jan. 1
Solemnity of Mary the Mother of God
Thursday, May 14
Ascension Thursday
Saturday, Aug. 15
Solemnity of the Assumption (abrogated because it falls on Saturday)
Sunday, Nov. 1
All Saints
Tuesday, Dec.8
Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception
Thursday, Dec. 25
Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord (Christmas)
Lenten Regulations Print E-mail

Catholics who have celebrated their 14th birthday are to abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday, all Fridays in Lent, and Good Friday.

In addition to abstaining from meat, Catholics who have celebrated their 18th birthday, until they celebrate their 59th birthday, are to fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. Those who are bound to this regulation may eat only one full meal. Two smaller meals are permitted if necessary to maintain strength according to one's needs, but eating solid foods between meals is not permitted.

These minimal penitential practices should not be lightly excused.

For more information, including resources for penance around the diocese, click here.