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Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Birmingham Reg. Charity No. 234216.
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Mass Time: Sun. 9.30am & 11.30am
Link: Live Streaming of Mass
Writings of the Parish Priest (1) Writings of the Parish priest (2)
Writings of the Parish priest (3)
Read, reflect and live inspired (4)
Writings of the Parish priest (5)
Fr. Jimmy Lutwama AJ
Gospel Reflection :
Jesus enjoined them, “Watch out, guard against the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.” Mark 8:15
What is this “leaven” Jesus is speaking of? After giving this warning to His disciples, Jesus then gives an explanation to them of what He means and what He doesn’t mean. But even the explanation seems to be over their heads. So He concludes by saying, “Do you still not understand?” To this day, Jesus is still asking this question to each one of us.
This was certainly Jesus trying to get them to think, to listen and to look deeper. He was warning them, “Watch out!” Watch out for this leaven. It’s a warning of love to help them see and understand a very real danger.
Everyone who bakes bread knows the effect of just a little leaven (such as yeast) in the dough. Add just a little bit and it affects the whole loaf. If a child is helping with the baking, this child may return several times, watching the dough rise little by little. It can become a fascinating thing to watch. And it all resulted from just this little yeast.
So what is this leaven of the Pharisees and Herod? It’s the evil words, evil intent and errors that they spread. For the Pharisees, it may be that it’s just a little misconception or misrepresentation of what Jesus said or did. They may twist His words or may simply give non-verbal opinions to others. This is contagious and has potential to affect everyone. Little by little their small seeds of doubt and dissent take a toll on others.
We may tend to be thinking about all of “those” people we know who do this. But we’d miss an important opportunity for growth if we failed to first look at ourselves. Do I do this sometimes? Do I say things that mislead in small or subtle ways? Or do I mislead others by my non-verbal negative attitudes? Am I a “negative person” sometimes?
No need to feel guilty or get down on ourselves if we feel convicted. Rather, we should look at this little lesson of Jesus to realize the great power of our words. The smallest of words can do great harm over time.
But that’s not all we should focus on. It’s just as important to realize that the small loving words we say also have potential to make a huge difference over time. Perhaps it’s just that small smile we give or a kind action that we think goes unnoticed. These little actions and words are the leaven of the Gospel. They do make a difference and they can become contagious, also.
Reflect, today, upon the small things in life. Know that these small sins and small acts of love make a huge difference in the end.
LEARN FROM MISTAKES
Thomas Edison tried two thousand different materials in search of a filament for the light bulb. When none worked satisfactorily, his assistant complained, “All our work is in vain. We have learned nothing.” Edison replied very confidently, “Oh, we have come a long way and we have learned a lot. We now know that there are two thousand elements which we cannot use to make a good light bulb.”
THE ANT AND THE DOVE
One hot day, an ant was searching for some water. After walking around for some time, she came to a spring. To reach the spring, she had to climb up a blade of grass. While making her way up, she slipped and fell into the water. She could have drowned if a dove up a nearby tree had not seen her. Seeing that the ant was in trouble, the dove quickly plucked off a leaf and dropped it into the water near the struggling ant. The ant moved towards the leaf and climbed up there. Soon it carried her safely to dry ground. Just at that time, a hunter nearby was throwing out his net towards the dove, hoping to trap it. Guessing what he was about to do, the ant quickly bit him on the heel. Feeling the pain, the hunter dropped his net. The dove was quick to fly away to safety. One good turn deserves another.
Trust in God
A man just got married and was returning home with his wife. They were crossing a lake in a boat, when suddenly a great storm arose. The man was a warrior, but the woman became very much afraid because it seemed almost hopeless:
The boat was small and the storm was really huge, and any moment they were going to be drowned. But the man sat silently, calm and quiet, as if nothing was happening.
The woman was trembling and she said, “Are you not afraid ?”. This may be our last moment of life! It doesn’t seem that we will be able to reach the other shore. Only some miracle can save us; otherwise death is certain. Are you not afraid? Are you mad or something? Are you a stone or something?
The man laughed and took the sword out of its sheath. The woman was even more puzzled: What he was doing? Then he brought the naked sword close to the woman’s neck, so close that just a small gap was there, it was almost touching her neck.
He said,” Are you afraid ?”
She started to laugh and said,” Why should I be afraid ?,If the sword is in your hands, why I should be afraid? I know you love me.
” He put the sword back and said, This is my answer”. I know God Loves me, and the storm is in His hands
SO WHATSOEVER IS GOING TO HAPPEN IS GOING TO BE GOOD. If we survive, good; if we don’t survive, good ,because everything is in His hands and He cannot do anything wrong.
Moral: Develop Trust. This is the trust which one needs to imbibe. and which is capable of transforming your whole life. Any less won’t do!
Prayer for the week:
Lord Jesus, You came as loving Savior, Taking upon Yourself the burden of my failing. I give You thanks that You remain always To hold open the door of faith. With the Heavenly Father, all things are possible, Though at times I struggle with doubt. I give You thanks for forgiveness and hope renewed At the threshold of the door of faith. Jesus, our Good Shepherd, you were sent By the Father who desires that none be lost. I give You thanks that, even unbidden, You enter my heart through the door of faith. Lord, You have shown me the way Leading to eternal life with You. I give You thanks, for in prayer at any hour, You answer every knock on the door of faith. Amen.