Author: Patrick Clark

Love Draws Us to the Particular —2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 6 Baruch 5:1-9 Psalm 126:1-6 Philippians 1:4-6,8-11 Luke 3:1-6 Every Christmas my mother took a week of vacation to prepare for the holiday celebration. Growing up an only child, she never really relished vacations that involved lots of “together time” either in the car or in hotel rooms. So the week in December when she got ready for Christmas was a special treat for her, because she got to do fun things while everyone else was out of the house. She did them for us, however, and for everyone who came into the house over the holiday season....

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The Heart Has Its Laws —26th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 137 Numbers 11:25-29 Psalm 19:8-14 James 5:1-6 Mark 9:38-43,45,47-48 Blaise Pascal’s famous adage “the heart has its reasons which reason knows not” would sound very strange to one attuned to the Biblical concept of “the heart.” The term “heart” occurs over a thousand times in the Bible, and its meaning consistently refers to the center of an individual’s identity, comprising all the various dimensions of one’s personal agency: physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual. In the Biblical imagination, your heart is “you”; it is the integral core that makes you who you are. Like his near-contemporary Descartes, Pascal presumes...

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Life amidst Death—20th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 119 Proverbs 9:1-6 Psalm 34: 2-7 Ephesians 5:15-20 John 6:51-58 This week’s readings are about two themes: wisdom and life. The first reading speaks of wisdom as a person building a house and preparing a table of food to entice passers-by to enter. Wisdom is not a passive conceptual category, but an active agent. She draws people enter in, in order to nourish them and give them life. The second reading is a more straightforward ethical exhortation from St. Paul to “live not as foolish persons but as wise.” He says we should make the most of the...

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In God’s Time—3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

As the history of Israel demonstrates, living in God’s time makes one distinctive, and often renders one at odds with the world’s way of marking time. But only by living in God’s time can one convey to the world the fullness of the love that is the ultimate meaning of all that is.

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