Showing posts from September, 2010

Saint Francis of Assisi, Friar (Transferred) - 3 October 2010

The Readings for Saint Francis Canticle of the Sun Psalm 148 Galatians 6:14-18 Saint Matthew 11:25-30        BACKGROUND Born as Giovanni Bernadone, the man soon to be known as Francesco, was the son of a prosperous cloth merchant.  He lived a life of pleasure and work in his father’s trade.  As a knight, he fought in the regional wars of Perugia and Assisi, and after illness and imprisonment returned home.  On St. Matthias’ Day (24 February 1209) at mass in the chapel at Portiuncula he heard these words from the Gospel for the day, words which would change his life: As you go, make this proclamation: 'The kingdom of heaven is at hand.' Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, drive out demons. Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give. Do not take gold or silver or copper for your belts; no sack for the journey, or a second tunic, or sandals, or walking stick. The laborer deserves his keep. Whatever town or village you enter, l

The Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 22 - 3 October 2010

The Readings for the Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost Habakkuk 1:1-4, 2:1-4 Psalm 37:1-10 II Timothy 1:1-14 Saint Luke 17:5-10 Habakkuk the Prophet        BACKGROUND When prophets come to mind, it is either Isaiah or Jeremiah that occupies our thoughts, and then we might turn to others, Amos, or Micah.   Habakkuk, however does not leap to the forefront.   His appearance in the lectionary is brief, and indeed his appearance in the history of Israel is brief, or succinct as well.   He was probably a contemporary of Jeremiah, and made his utterances prior to the destruction of Jerusalem in 597 BCE, around 605, when Nebuchadnezzar defeated the Egyptian Pharaoh at Carchemish.   What is important to us is what he had to say.   The book is divided into three sections.   The first is a Conversation between the prophet and God, in which he complains to God about the lack of justice, and continued oppression.   The second is a series of curses against evil-doers (