Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/01 – The Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church
Readings: Gn 3:9-15,20 or Acts 1:12-14/Ps 87:1-2,3&5,6-7/Jn 19:25-34
Two years ago Pope Francis declared this day the feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This feast recognizes Mary’s substantive role in her suffering and the support of her Son’s redemption. The Pope saw it as the natural conclusion to the Redemption.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/02 – Saints Marcellinus and Peter, Martyrs
Readings: 2 Pt 3:12-15a,17-18/Ps 90:2, 3-4, 10, 14 AND 16/Mk 12:13-17
The gospel today tempts Jesus into a trap. The Scribes and the Pharisees were constantly trying to trap Jesus. They ask Him “Is it lawful to pay tax to Caesar or not?” Jesus looks at the image and responds, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s”
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/03 – St Charles Lwanga and Companions, Martyrs
Readings: 2 Tm 1:1-3,6-12/Ps 123:1B-2AB, 2CDEF/Mk 12:18-27
St. Paul tells us that Jesus saved us according to His own works and not according to our works. This is profound because it shows us that Jesus and the Father had a plan on our lives. They wanted to restore us to Them. They wanted to show us the depth of their love for us. As St. John tells us, “God so loved the world that he gave His only beloved Son for us.”
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/04
Readings: 2 Tm 2:8-15/Ps 25:4-5AB,8-9,10&14/Mk 12:28-34
There are two prevailing thoughts in the readings today. One is that of persevering and the other is the love of God. If we persevere, we shall reign with Him but if we deny Him He will deny us. If we love Him and our neighbor as ourselves then He will bless us. On these two principles our whole spiritual life is based. There is a struggle and there will always be a struggle. If there is no struggle, then guess whose side you are on?
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/05 – St Boniface, Bishop and Martyr
Readings: 2 Tm 3:10-17/Ps 119:157,160,161,165,166,168/Mk 12:35-37
There is a well known fact in the first reading which says that if we want to live religiously in Christ Jesus then we will be persecuted. Yet even in all these things the Lord will deliver us and protect us. There is a little known fact which we take for granted and that is that the Lord does not abandon us. If we are faithful to the Lord then the Lord will be faithful to us.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/06 – St Norbert, Bishop
Readings: 2 Tm 4:1-8/Ps 71:8-9, 14-15AB, 16-17, 22/Mk 12:38-44
St. Paul continues the description of the struggle where he tells us that he has competed well and that there is laid up for him a reward and not only for him but for all who compete well and who stand with the Lord through tough times. They stand with Jesus and bear witness to Him. It is not enough just to bear lip service it must be a life through thick and thin. We must, like St. Paul, say “I live not I ,but Christ lives in me”.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/07 – THE MOST HOLY TRINITY
Readings: Ex 34:4b-6, 8-9/ DN 3:52, 53, 54, 55, 56/2 Cor 13:11-13/Jn 3:16-18
In the first reading the Lord says to Moses that He is slow to anger and rich in mercy. It is the feast of the Most Holy Trinity. In the gospel God says that He gave His only begotten Son because He so loved the world. It is difficult to understand the nature of God’s love. God’s love is there. God’s love is there, it is pure gift accept it.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/08
Readings: 1 Kgs 17:1-6/PS 121:1BC-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8/Mt 5:1-12
It is difficult for man to understand god. In the first reading Elijah,the Tishbite asks Ahab to ask a sign from God and Ahab refuses. The gospel recounts the Beatitudes which are the “blesseds’. This is the nature of God. In all of this man and God are at a distance. What God has for man, it seems that man refuses. Who is in charge man or God? You would think that once God came and set man free that then man would open up to God. Are we still so stubborn as to refuse what comes from the gracious hand of God? God died for us and can do nothing further. Now it is up to us.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/09 – St Ephrem, Deacon and Doctor of the Church
Readings: 1 Kgs 17:7-16/PS 4:2-3, 4-5, 7B-8//Mt 5:13-16
The readings tell of the miracles which God performed for the poor and lowly. For example God sends Elijah to the widow of Zareph to provide a miracle for her and her son the time of drought. God also tells His disciples that they are the salt of the earth and the light of the world. When we are open then God affirms us. It is what God wants for me and not what I want from God.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/10
Readings: 1 Kgs 18:20-39/Ps 16:1B-2AB,4,5AB&8,11/Mt 5:17-19
From the Book of Kings today Elijah challenges the people. Who are they going to follow? Is it Yahweh or the prophets of Baal. The challenge is on! The prophets of Baal dance around their sacrifice to no avail. Elijah douses His sacrifice with water three times and begs Yahweh to consume it which Yahweh does. There is the proof for the people. Then Elijah has the prophets of Baal put to death. Time and again God proves to the people that He is on their side and still they defy Him.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/11 – St Barnabas, Apostle Memorial
Readings: Acts 11:21b-26;13:1-3/Ps 98:1, 2-3AB, 3CD-4, 5-6/Mt 5:20-26
Today is the feast of St. Barnabas. He is one of the first converts. After the Council of Jerusalem he goes to Antioch then to Jerusalem where he finds St. Paul and brings Paul to Antioch. There is tremendous fervor and enthusiasm about the Christ. Barnabas is a firebrand for Jesus Christ in the spread of the gospel.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/12
Readings: 1 Kgs 19:9a, 11-16/Ps 27:7-8A,8B-9ABC,13-14/Mt 5:27-32
The gospel of Matthew confronts us today. Matthew challenges us saying anyone looking with lust at a woman has already committed adultery with her in his heart. This is a hard saying and one that many would contradict. The whole subject of pornography kicks in and most people would say that there is nothing wrong with that. Spiritual adultery is a sin and no explanation can excuse it. It brings to mind the intention of the sinner.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/13 – St Anthony of Padua, Priest and Doctor of the Church Memorial
Readings:1 Kgs 19:19-21/Ps 16:1B-2A&5,7-8,9-10/Mt 5:33-37
There are two meaningful stories in today’s readings. One is the rather manful story of the mantle of Elijah A mantle is one a covering or a protecting and the other is a ministry. Elijah is about to be taken up to heaven and he throws his mantle over Elisha. When Elisha endures this he first tells Elijah first let me say goodbyes to my parents Elijah reminds Elisha “See what I just did to you” Elisha realizes and then obeys. In the gospel Jesus tells the disciples “do not take a false oath.” Obey and follow the word of God.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/14 – Corpus Christi Solemnity
Readings: Dt 8:2-3,14b-16a/PS 147:12-13,14-15,19-20/1 Cor 10:16-17/Jn 6:51-58
The Feast of the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ: This gospel is taken from the sixth chapter f St. John’s gospel. Here Jesus tells the disciples that destroy this Temple and in three I will build it up again. Jesus is referring to the temple of his Body. They say that it is a hard saying. He emphasizes the temple of his Body. Some drift away. He reemphasizes His body. He asks Peter; “Will you too drift away” Peter respond: “Lord, to whom shall we go for you have the words of everlasting life” The Eucharist is the Center of catholic life.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/15
Readings: 1 Kgs 21:1-16/Ps 5:2-3AB, 4B-6A, 6B-7/Mt 5:38-42
What a difference the way of the world makes in the readings today. In the first reading Ahab asks Naboth for his vineyard and Ahab will offer him am a price for it. Jezebel connives and gets the vineyard for Ahab. She uses false bribery to get the vineyard and Naboth is put to death for blasphemy. The gospel proclaims the Eucharist as the source of divine life. We cannot choose our way rather than God’s way. There is a recompense for either choice of our way. God takes all into account.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/16
Readings: 1 Kgs 21:17-29/ PS 51:3-4, 5-6AB,11&16/Mt 5:43-48
Elijah confronts Ahab about what Ahab has done. Ahab immediately repents and does penance. Once we are confronted by God there is always a way back. On the other hand Jezebel the wife of Ahab is obstinate and does not repent. She is right in her own mind. Her way is the right way. The gospel gives us the teaching that an eye for an eye is no longer the right way. We are to forgive and let the rest up to God.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/17
Readings: 2 Kgs 2:1, 6-14/PS 31:20, 21, 24/Mt 6:1-6, 16-18
This is a strange gospel for today. It is the Ash Wednesday gospel in the middle of summer. It is still very applicable in our society. People do things to be seen. They would beg or pretend the opposite. They do it to draw attention to their own holiness. They may get notice from their fellows but it is God who truly rewards and when God rewards they are blessed indeed. Jesus is the reason for every season.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/18
Readings: Sir 48:1-14/PS 97:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7/Mt 6:7-15
The first reading today exalts the two prophets. They were firebrands of the righteousness of God. They pointed to God and the ways of God. The gospel of Matthew follows on with the teaching of the Our Father to the disciples. You could truly say that the whole teaching of Jesus is summed up in these two pieces of scripture. What dominates us? Is it our way for Jesus or Jesus way for us?
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/19 – THE MOST SACRED HEART OF JESUS
Readings: Dt 7:6-11/ PS 103:1-2, 3-4, 6-7, 8, 10/1 Jn 4:7-16/Mt 11:25-30
Today is the Feast of The Sacred Heart of Jesus. There is a theme of littleness in the readings. The Israelites are told that they are a little nation yet chosen to become a great nation under God. In the second reading Jesus tells them that they are the beloved of God. In the gospel, Jesus tells the disciples that He gives thank to the Father for revealing it to the little ones while hiding it from the wise and the learned, and finally He asks the disciples to take His yoke upon them for He is meek and humble of heart. What could be more simple a gospel and a way of life?
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/20 – Feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary
Readings: 2 Chr 24:17-25/PS 89:4-5, 29-30, 31-32, 33-34/Lk 2:41-51
There was a recent approved apparition in which the Flame of Love was given to Elizabeth Kindelmann in which the flame of love was the love of Jesus burning is the heart of Mary. There is also another aspect to the heart of Mary which is the suffering of a mother’s heart, the seven sorrows of the Immaculate of Mary. It gives you a true insight into the love that Mary exhibits for her Son.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/21 – 12TH Sunday in Ordinary Time
Readings: Jer 20:10-13/ PS 69:8-10, 14, 17, 33-35/Rom 5:12-15/Mt 10:26-33
There is an uncanny motivation against anyone who is on God’s side. That person is looked upon with disgust or suspicion. In other words there is something suspicious about him. He doesn’t fit in. He is on the outside. Jesus told us that and again tells it to us today. Even in the gospel Jesus tells us that all that is concealed today will be revealed. So what use is there to be hiding sins or negativity when it will be made manifest. Isn’t it better to be on God’s side now than to be on the opposite side later.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/22 – Saint Paulinus of Nola, Bishop; Saints John Fisher, Bishop, and Thomas More, Martyrs
Readings: 2 Kgs 17:5-8, 13-15a, 18/PS 60:3, 4-5, 12-13/Mt 7:1-5
Assyria captured Samaria and deported them. This happened because the children of Israel sinned by worshipping false gods. This was a law given to Moses which said ‘Thou shall worship God and Him only shall thou adore”. It is a very easy jump to go from there to another god. Witness the wrath of God on the Israelites who worshipped the ‘golden calf’. As the gospel observes “remove the beam from your own eye first so that you can then remove the splinter from your brother’s eye.”
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/23
Readings: 2 Kgs 19:9b-11, 14-21, 31-35a, 36/PS 48:2-3AB, 3CD-4, 10-11/Mt 7:6, 12-14
Sennacherib threatens Hezekiah with the destruction of Jerusalem. Hezekiah goes before the Lord with the threatened letter and invokes the Lord’s answer. Hezekiah is told that despite the power of Sennacherib’s army, Jerusalem will not fall. It is important to realize what Hezekiah first did and that was to go before the Lord and let the Lord be the judge and arbitrator.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/24 – The Nativity of St John the Baptist
Readings: Vigil – Jer 1:4-10/PS 71:1-2, 3-4A, 5-6AB, 15AB & 17/1 Pt 1:8-12/Lk 1:5-17 Day – Is 49:1-6/PS 139:1B-3, 13-14AB, 14C-15/Acts 13:22-26/Lk 1:57-66, 80
Today is the feast of the nativity of St. John the Baptist. He is the precursor of Jesus Christ. He is that bridge between the Old Testament and the New Testament. John is called the ‘herald’ of Jesus Christ. He proclaims that Jesus is the messiah and that Jesus must increase while John decreases. That is a great guide for us to follow. As long as Jesus increases then we grow in Christ.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/25
Readings: 2 Kgs 24:8-17/PS 79:1B-2, 3-5, 8, 9/Mt 7:21-29
The gospel today is a stark reminder of our true intention. Jesus warns us that not everyone who says ‘Lord, Lord’ will enter the kingdom of God. It is not enough just of say it we have to follow through with action. Our foundation has to be set on solid rock and not just saying it. This is a fallacy of our time. All we have to do is to say the right words and we are okay. Well nothing could be further from the truth. Action speaks louder than words.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/26
Readings: 2 Kgs 25:1-12/PS 137:1-2, 3, 4-5, 6/Mt 8:1-4
There are two conflicting events in the readings today. One is the destruction of Israel and the other is the cleansing of the leper. The leper tells Jesus ‘if you will to do so, You can make us clean” Jesus tells him “I do will it” and the leper is healed. The message is clear and that is give everything over to the Lord.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/27 – Saint Cyril of Alexandria, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Readings: Lam 2:2, 10-14, 18-19/PS 74:1B-2, 3-5, 6-7, 20-21/Mt 8:5-17
There is a series of healings that happen in today’s gospel. First it is the centurion’s servant who is healed just by Jesus saying the word. At that very instant the centurion’s servant is healed. Then there is Peter’s mother-in-law who is healed in the presence of Jesus and then towards evening many more are healed. It shows the compassion and the mercy of Jesus. All we have to do is to allow Jesus to be present to us and let the Lord do the rest.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/28 – 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Readings: 2 Kgs 4:8-11, 14-16a/ PS 89:2-3, 16-17, 18-19/Rom 6:3-4, 8-11/Mt 10:37-42
Today’s readings are all about life. In the first reading Elisha as an answer to the generosity of the woman rewards her with a baby. Then in the second reading St Paul reminds us of the true life of the baptized person who is baptized into the death of Jesus that he may rise to new and eternal life. Then in the gospel Jesus tells us that love for Him must precede all other loves even that of family. That is a strange decision but it tells us that we cannot love family if the source of that love is rooted in another power. So seek first the kingdom of God and all else will be provided. There is order in the love of God.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/29 – Solemnity St Peter & St Paul Apostles
Readings: Acts 12:1-11/PS 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9/2 Tm 4:6-8, 17-18/Mt 16:13-19
Today is the feast of SS. Peter and Paul. If there is an insight into the way God works it is this feast. First of all we think that Paul (Saul) is the one who should not be chosen. He persecuted the early Christians. Then even when he is chosen that he should be the apostle to the Jews. Again wrong, he is sent to the Gentiles. It reminds me of the old saying “What man proposes, God disposes”.
Fr. Barry’s Scripture Reflection for 2020/06/30 – The First Martyrs of the Holy Roman Church
Readings: Am 3:1-8; 4:11-12/PS 5:4B-6A, 6B-7, 8/Mt 8:23-27
The reading from the prophet Amos is a sobering one. It challenges Israel to follow the way of the Lord. God says to the Israelites that He has favored the people but they have drifted away from Him. Does it mean that they are scot free? There is a consequence to their actions. Punishment is due them unless they repent and turn back from their sinful ways. So, simply put pay me now or pay me later.