Scripture of the Week
Mass Readings—Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
The Book of Wisdom, chapter twelve, verses thirteen & sixteen thru nineteen;
Psalm Eighty-six, verses five & six, nine & ten, & fifteen & sixteen;
The Letter to the Romans, chapter eight, verses twenty-six & twenty-seven;
The Gospel according to Matthew, chapter thirteen, verses twenty-four thru forty-three
(or, the Gospel according to Matthew, chapter thirteen, verses twenty-four thru thirty).
Commentary: Video Gospel reflection by Jeff Cavins: Encountering the Word.
Gospel reflection by Bishop Robert Barron (Word on Fire):
Friends, our Gospel today is the parable of the weeds among the wheat. God's word creates the Church, the community of those who strive to build up the Kingdom. But this Church is never absolutely pure and untrammeled, for God's ways are opposed by a spiritual power, an enemy. His task is to sow weeds among the wheat—clandestinely, quietly, unobtrusively.Bible Study—The Bible Timeline: Conquest & Judges, Part 1 of 2
This sort of coming-together of good and evil is to be expected. The Church will always be a place of saints and sinners, and the sinners will often look like saints. The enemy of the Church, who never rests, ensures it.
When we discover evil, it is always very tempting to go after it with both fists, to take it out. But the warning of the Master here is extremely important. Sometimes, our zeal can lead to far greater problems, precisely because of the way evil is related to the good.
So what should we do? Let them grow side-by-side for the time being. At the end, at harvest time, the Master will separate them out.
The Second Letter to the Corinthians, chapter ten, verses three & four;
The Letter to the Ephesians, chapter six, verses eleven thru eighteen;
The First Letter to Timothy, chapter six, verses eleven & twelve;
The Letter to the Hebrews, chapter eleven, verse thirty-one;
The Letter of James, chapter two, verses twenty-four, twenty-five, & twenty-six;
The First Letter of Peter, chapter two, verses eleven & twelve.
Commentary: Excerpt from Accusation of Weakness (2 Cor., 10:3-4), excerpts from Battle against Evil & Constant Prayer (Ephesians, 6:11-18), excerpt from Exhortations to Timothy (1 Tim., 6:11-12), excerpt from Faith of the Ancients (Hebrews, 11:31), excerpt from Faith & Works (James, 2:24-26), & Christian Examples (1 Peter, 2:11-12).
Penance—Assigned by Father Tango Foxtrot
The Gospel according to John, chapter twenty-one (verses one thru twenty-five).
Commentary: IV. Epilogue—The Resurrection Appearance in Galilee: The Appearance to the Seven Disciples (21:1-14), Jesus & Peter (21:15-19), the Beloved Disciple (21:20-23), & Conclusion (21:24-25).
Mass Journal: Week 30
Reflection by Matthew Kelly, founder of the Dynamic Catholic Institute:
Holiness & renewal are inseparably linked. Where there is holiness the Church has always thrived. If the Church is not thriving there is one primary reason for that… & when you & I begin to take God's call to live holy lives seriously, the Church will begin to thrive in new & exciting ways. Holiness is compatible with every state of life. Married [persons] are called to live holy lives just as much as monks & nuns. Sexual intimacy is a profound gift from God & an instrument of holiness. The riches of this world have value only inasmuch as they help us fulfill our essential purpose. If we own them, they can be powerful tools that help us live holy lives. If they own us, they will prevent us from becoming the-best-version-of-ourselves (sic). The rich are called to live holy lives by using their wealth in productive ways that foster their own growth & the growth of others. Materials possessions, marriage & sexual intimacy, work, money, & positions of authority are just some of the opportunities life presents to live holy lives.Commentary: Unless of course you belong to my parish, where this Sunday our pastor, Father Sierra Alpha, ridiculed the idea of living a holy life & told us not even to try to grow in holiness.
Otherwise, 23 July would be the festival of Saint Phocas the Gardener, Martyr (died circa 303), martyred in the reign of the emperor Diocletian: Martyr-link & Wikipedia-link.
'Twould also be the festival of Saint John Cassian, Deacon (circa 360-435, A.K.A. the Ascetic, the Roman): Saint-link & Wikipedia-link.
Commentary: Wayback Machine.
'Twould also be the festival of Saint Bridget of Sweden, Religious, O.Ss.S. (circa 1303-1373, A.K.A. Birgitta, of Vadstena), foundress of the Brigettines, formally the Order of the Most Holy Savior: Saint-link ūna, Saint-link duae, & Wikipedia-link; Wikipedia-link O.Ss.S.
Commentary: Kinswoman of St. Ingrid of Skänninge [2 September] & mother of St. Catherine of Sweden [24 March].