July 31st. Patience announced with a sense of pride. “Although my daughter was a single mom and had a tough time I feel very proud of my granddaughter Carol. She has been a very committed Catholic as a teenager, hasn’t slept around and was lucky to meet this super guy Peter, who was the same. They did marry quite young and I started getting worried when no babies arrived for a while. After two years when they came to show me their first little girl I was really struck by the look of wonder and awe on their faces at the sight of this little miracle. It just made me think they had been talking with God.”
When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tables of the covenant in his hand he did not know that the skin of his face shone because he had been talking with God. Exodus 34:29-35. Pope Francis: Children once born begin to receive, along with nourishment and care the spiritual gift of knowing with certainty that they are loved. This love is shown through the gift of their personal name, the sharing of language, looks of love and the brightness of a smile. In this way they learn that the beauty of human relationships touches our soul, seeks our freedom, accepts the difference of others, recognises and respects them as a partner in dialogue. Such is love and it contains a spark of God’s love. AL 172
AUGUST THEME: WOMEN AND MEN MATTER.
Overview. Everyone is a sexual being throughout their lives. Good relationships between women and men are essential to a well-functioning society. Parents should relate to and treat boys and girls equally and guide them with care in their developing identity as future adult members of society. Much work is needed for greater equality and tolerance between the sexes. Gender-based violence is a result of the inability to relate well. Oppression and abuse are mostly experienced by women but men may be alienated and can be abused too. People with other sexual orientations, LGBTIQ, are particularly vulnerable.
Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ. Ephesians 5:21. Pope Francis: God himself created sexuality which is a marvellous gift to his creatures. Sexuality is not a means of gratification or entertainment it is an interpersonal language wherein the other is taken seriously in his or her sacred and inviolable dignity. AL 151.
August 2nd. “Apart from the boys going to initiation schools we don’t have many rites in our society these days do we,” Mrs Dlamini said. “Much as we are afraid for our sons, I do think it is a good idea for them to have a formal initiation into manhood.” “Yes, but that doesn’t mean they can mistreat girls. That should be something they learn there too.” Patience said.
The Lord said to Moses, “These are the appointed feasts of the Lord, the holy convocations, which you shall proclaim at the time appointed for them.’ Leviticus 23. Pope Francis: Sex education should provide information while keeping in mind that children and young people have not yet attained full maturity. The information has to come at a proper time and in a way suited to their age. AL281
August 4th. Sunday 18C. Fr Oliver wondered out aloud as he began his homily. “Who is more vain, boys or girls, women or men? Maybe we are all vain but not to the same extent and about the same things. A man may want a beautiful car, a woman a perfect house, young and old people want to be as attractive as possible for one another. I think wanting what is good and attractive is great, but it doesn’t help to make it an obsession or use it to show-off and put other people down.”
‘Vanity of vanities’ says the Preacher. Sometimes a man who has toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill must leave all to be enjoyed by a man who did not toil for it. Ecclesiastes 1-2:23 Pope Francis: Modesty is a natural means whereby we defend our personal privacy and prevent ourselves from being turned into objects to be used. AL282.
August 6th. Transfiguration. Vuzi and Emily had struggled for years to have a child and when at last they did become pregnant there was great celebration in the family. When they discovered the baby was a boy Jack’s father was particularly pleased. He told Jack, “You are my oldest son and now there will be someone after you to take responsibility and carry on the family name.” Some of the women in the family had a different way of seeing things.
Jesus took with him Peter and John and James and went up on the mountain to pray. And as he was praying the appearance of his countenance was altered and his clothing became dazzling white. And behold two men talked with him, Moses and Elijah. As the men were parting Peter said to Jesus, “Master it is well that we are here.” A cloud overshadowed them and a voice came out of the cloud. This is my Son, my Chosen, listen to him!” Luke9:28-36. Pope Francis: Each person with all his or her failings is called to the fullness of life in heaven. There transformed by Christ’s resurrection, every weakness, darkness and infirmity will pass away and the person’s true being will shine forth in all its goodness and beauty. This realisation helps, amid the aggravations of this present life, to see each person from a supernatural perspective. AL 117