Sunday, June 26, 2016

Lectio Divina for the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C

The Gospel reading for today is from Luke 9: 51-62.  But this Lectio Divina is Luke: 9: 51-56.


When the days for Jesus' being taken up were fulfilled, He resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem and He sent messengers ahead of Him. On the way they entered a Samaritan village to prepare for His reception there, but they would not welcome Him because the destination of His journey was Jerusalem.  When the disciples James and John saw this they asked, "Lord, do You want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?"  Jesus turned and rebuked them, and they journey to another village.


Hostilities and disagreements about proper worship dot the centuries-long history of relationships between the Judeans and Samaritans.  In the first century, B.C.  Pompey rebuilt Samaria and Herod built a city there that included a temple to Caesar Augustus.  This did not endear the Samaritans to the Jews.  Later events make matters worse, i.e., Samaritan vandalism of the Jerusalem temple in A.D. 6 and 9, murder of a Judean pilgrim en route to Jerusalem in 51 A.D. and the subsequent retaliation of a massacre of Samaritans.


Does not this vile animosity remind you of the world, today?  Liberals against conservatives, Muslims terrorists against Western values,  citizens against immigrants, Constitutionalists against reformers, pro-lifers against abortionists, etc..  When Jesus turns and rebukes His disciples for wanting to call down fire from heaven upon the inhospitable Samaritans (Luke 9:56)  He is rejecting the old "eye for eye, tooth for tooth" laws proscribed in Leviticus.  Jesus, later on will have the good Samaritan save the day for the wounded man, whom the priest and Levite ignore (Luke 10:25-37).  Jesus is witnessing to respect neighbors and reconcile our differences.  There is more than one way to live and worship God and we are to respect all of them.


Lord, may we have the graces of wisdom and understanding, for those who are different from us.  May we help towards reconciliation between all who love You.  Help us not to allow cultural and historical differences to divide us.  May we all serve You.  May we all love You.  I ask this in the name of Jesus Who taught us this.


Lord, Jesus Christ, help me be Your instrument today.

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