Prisca Kyemi, although in a Maasai dress she is not a Maasai. She is a young talented woman, of the Nyaturu tribe from Singida, Tanzania in East Africa, who was dreaming to see Rome and St. Peter's Basilica.
Galatians 4:22-24, 26-27, 31-5:1; Luke 11:29-32
Our readings for today challenge us to look at the legitimacy of who we are and what is expected of us because of that. We are people of “the promise.” While Abraham has two “sets” of descendants, it is only those deceased from Isaac who have the legitimacy to be free as a result of the covenant with God and Abraham. The miracle of Isaac’s birth to a barren mother was a sign of the covenant – a promise made good. Paul is emphasizing that similarly, following Christ also sets us free. The other part of that original “deal” was to live according to God’s rules – we haven’t been so good about that. . . We want to have the benefits of the legitimate son (Isaac) and the promise but want to live by our own rules. So now Paul is telling us, we have the opportunity to be “free” again because of the promise of this Son. But . . . we must “stand firm.”
Readings: Wisdom 7:7-11; Hebrews 4:12-13; Mark 10:17-30
Let us have a look at the dynamic of this conversation the rich man has with Jesus.
The first thing Mark makes sure to tell us is that this encounter interrupts Jesus ‘setting out on the way’ (v17). It is not a teaching moment, but the man is concerned enough to find the Lord, kneel before him and ask him the question that troubles him, even when Jesus has other things to do. So, it is highly unlikely to be a challenge to his authority or an attempt to trick him.
Jesus, as He usually does, expresses such a wonderful thought in a succinct fashion - Blest are those who hear the word of God, and keep it. He focuses on blessings, on positives. No damnation and hellfire here, just why good things happen to good people. Is this hearing and keeping hard stuff to do?
What are the obstacles to the fuller coming of God's Kingdom into our world? Frequently they are summarized as "the world, the flesh and the devil." "The world" stands for external cultural attitudes militating against living for God and others, such as secularism, individualism, materialism. "The flesh" stands for internal personal dividedness inhibiting our free response to the Spirit, such as the capital sins of pride, envy, anger, sloth, avarice, gluttony, lust. And "the devil" is, well, the devil, Satan. A formidable triad!
POPE FRANCIS' PRAYER FOR THE 2018 SYNOD OF BISHOPS
Young People, Faith, and Vocational Discernment
3 October • Vatican City
Together, let us pray the Synod's official prayer; so that the youth of today may stake themselves on noble ideas, and courageously enter tomorrow ready to be saints of the new millennium. Lord Jesus, in journeying towards the Synod, your Church turns her attention to all the young people of the world.
In the first the days of October, the month dedicated to Our Lady of the Holy Rosary, the new group of Postulants from Rwanda, Congo, Cameroon and Singida/Tanzania came to the House of the International Novitiate in Arusha/Tanzania.
From 27th to 29th September the General Councils of Pallottine Roman Sisters (CSAC) and Pallottine Missionary Sisters (SAC), gathered together with newly formed Commission of six Sisters from six different countries (Italy, Germany, Brazil, Poland, India and Rwanda) at the Mother House of CSAC Pallottine Sisters in Via Porta Maggiore for the first historic meeting toward the unification of the two Pallottine Sisterly Congregations.
The passage in today’s gospel reading follows immediately upon St. Luke’s version of the Our Father. It seems to give further explanation of the disciples’ original petition of Jesus: “Lord, teach us how to pray.” I am struck by the stress on persistence in prayer. Jesus tells the story of the man who at midnight goes to ask a friend for loaves of bread because friends of his have come unexpectedly and he needs to feed them after their long journey.
The reading from Luke makes me stop and consider the power of praying the Our Father. We are reminded to praise even the name “God” who is our father. The prayer tells me of my need to trust and to ask for what it is that God knows I need on a day-to-day basis. We are reminded to simply trust, that if we ask for what God knows we need daily and trust, God will provide for our needs every day.