Monday, June 17, 2019

Monday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time

20th anniversary of the death of Cardinal Basil Hume (1923-1999)

Readings of the Day
RB: Ch 13:12-14
Mass: 2 Cor 6:1-10; Resp Ps 98; Mt 5:38-42

Shout to the Lord, all the earth, ring out your joy.

Two words come through loud and clear in today's first reading at Mass, "unfeigned love." Unfeigned is not a word we often hear in modern parlance. St Benedict tells us that we are to love our Abbess with "unfeigned and humble love" (RB 72:10). What is this unfeigned love that St Paul and St Benedict speak of? My trusty Merriam-Webster uses one word to define unfeigned, genuine. Is your love of God and love of your brother and sister genuine? Genuine love is authentic, sincere and truthful; it expects nothing in return; it comes from the depth of our being; it is not showy or artificial. Unfeigned love forgives; unfeigned love goes the extra mile with the one in need; with unfeigned love we hand over our tunic and cloak as well; unfeigned love gives to the one who asks (Lk 5:39-41). With unfeigned love we never turn away when someone needs our love (RB 4:26).

Living and true God, help us to grow in unfeigned and humble love so that we love you with our whole heart, our whole soul and all our strength, and love our neighbor as ourselves.

In memory of Cardinal Basil Hume, from To Be a Pilgrim: A Spiritual Notebook:

This life is a period of training, a time of preparation, during which we learn the art of loving God and our neighbour, the heart of the Gospel message, sometimes succeeding, sometimes failing.
Death is the way which leads us to the vision of God, the moment when we shall see Him as He really is, and find our total fulfillment in love's final choice.
The ultimate union with that which is most lovable, union with God, is the moment of ecstasy, the unending 'now' of complete happiness. That vision will draw from us the response of surprise, wonder and joy which will be forever our prayer of praise. We are made for that.

NB. Today's photo of a magnificent tiger lily.

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