Monday, February 15, 2016

Project BLACK MAMBA: Lent

'Tis the feast of Saints Winaman, Sunaman, & Unaman, Martyrs, O.S.B. (died 1040), martyred by Vikings: Martyr-link Whiskey, Martyr-link Sierra, Martyr-link Uniform & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the feast of Saint Sigfrid of Sweden, Bishop, O.S.B. (died 1045): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.

'Tis also the feast of Saint Claude de la Colombière, Priest, S.J. (1641-1682): Saint-link ūnus, Saint-link duo, & Wikipedia-link.

Commentary: Wayback Machine.

Scripture of the Day
Mass Readings
The Book of Leviticus, chapter nineteen, verses one, two, & eleven thru eighteen;
Psalm Nineteen, verses eight, nine, ten, & fifteen;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter twenty-five, verses thirty-one thru forty-six.

Commentary: The Judgment of the Nations.

Personal Reading
The Book of Genesis, chapter seventeen (verses one thru twenty-seven);
The Book of Genesis, chapter eighteen (verses one thru thirty-three);
The Book of Genesis, chapter nineteen (verses one thru thirty-eight);
The Book of Genesis, chapter twenty (verses one thru eighteen);
The Book of Genesis, chapter twenty-one (verses one thru thirty-four);
The Book of Isaiah, chapter fifty-nine (verses one thru twenty-one).

Commentary: Abram & Sarai are renamed Abraham & Sarah, the covenant of circumcision is established, Sodom & Gomorrah are punished for their unrepentant wickedness, & Isaac is born.

Chapter twenty is difficult, because it echoes the incident in Egypt related in chapter twelve, but presents Abraham as much more of a villain, seemingly a blatant extortionist. Scripture is full of the righteous falling short of righteousness—St. Peter's threefold denial of the Christ in the wee small hours of Good Friday, St. Paul's enthusiastic persecution of the Church & complicity in the martyrdom of St. Stephen—but in other cases the wrongdoing is made plain & contrition & repentance follow shortly thereafter. Abraham does not appear to think he's done anything wrong, though the next chapter makes clear that the man he extorted, King Abimelech of Gerar, regards Abraham as a shady character. This is hard; I shall hope that the import of this troubling writing will be made plain through prayerful reflection.

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