The Absence of God

Is this not, rather, the fast that I choose: / releasing those bound unjustly, / untying the thongs of the yoke; / Setting free the oppressed, / breaking off every yoke? / Is it not sharing your bread with the hungry, / bringing the afflicted and the homeless into your house; / Clothing the naked[read more]

Why Could We Not Cast It Out?

When Jesus saw that a crowd came running together he rebuked the unclean spirit and said to him:  “You mute and deaf spirit, I command you.  Go out from him, and never enter him again.”  And after shouting and convulsing him greatly it went out.  And he became like a dead man so that many[read more]

Wisdom and Contempt

“But will God really dwell on earth? The heavens, even the highest heaven, cannot contain you. How much less this temple I have built!  Yet give attention to your servant’s prayer and his plea for mercy, Lord my God. Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in your presence this day.[read more]

Prayer and Breaking Through

Today’s readings, as we spiritually await the coming of God into our lives and world, may give us pause. The messenger of God, who announces to the barren wife of Manoa and to childless Zechariah the great gift of a longed-for child, comes to them as “fearsome” or “terrible.” In the case of Zechariah the immediate effect of this visitation is that he is struck mute, unable to speak. He is quite literally unable to communicate in speech the experience of God’s messenger he has undergone.[read more]

Awareness and Judgment

On this first weekday of Advent, we pray that when the Lord comes and knocks, we shall be found “watchful in prayer.” To be in prayer is to be awake and watchful in a way far more truly and distinctively human than the way we are present to life much of the time. In today’s gospel Jesus exclaims to his disciples that in no person in Israel has he found the faith that the centurion manifests. For what Jesus experiences among his own people is what he well may experience among his church today when he comes. He may find[read more]

Transformation and Our Unconscious

But now the mystery has been manifested to his holy ones, to whom God chose to make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; it is Christ in you, the hope for glory. It is he whom we proclaim, admonishing everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may[read more]

Cleanse First the Inside

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees,  you hypocrites.  You cleanse the outside of cup and dish, but inside they are full of plunder and self-indulgence.  Blind Pharisee, cleanse first the inside of the cup, so that the outside also may be clean.” Matthew 23: 25-6 A wise teacher used to remind us that “the unconscious[read more]

Faith and Encounter

Then Jesus said to her in reply, “O woman, great is your faith!  Let it be done for you as you wish.”  And her daughter was healed from that hour. Matthew 15: 28 In today’s gospel of the encounter of Jesus with the Canaanite woman, we have described the “Culture of Encounter” that Christians, according[read more]

Prayer and Transfiguration

Jesus , taking Peter and John and James, went up onto the mountain to pray.  As he was praying, the appearance of his face was altered, and his clothing became dazzlingly white. Luke 9: 28-29 Yesterday I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts entitled Open Source.  It was a discussion of the Democratic[read more]