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FRIDAY OF THE TWENTY-SECOND WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME SEPTEMBER 4, 2020



A reading of the holy Gospel according to Luke 5:33-39

The scribes and Pharisees said to Jesus, “The disciples of John the Baptist fast often and offer prayers, and the disciples of the Pharisees do the same; but yours eat and drink.” Jesus answered them, “Can you make the wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come, and when the bridegroom is taken away from them, then they will fast in those days.” And he also told them a parable. “No one tears a piece from a new cloak to patch an old one. Otherwise, he will tear the new and the piece from it will not match the old cloak. Likewise, no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the new wine will burst the skins, and it will be spilled, and the skins will be ruined. Rather, new wine must be poured into fresh wineskins. And no one who has been drinking old wine desires new, for he says, ‘The old is good.’”



REFLECTION: “Can you make the wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come, and when the bridegroom is taken away from them, then they will fast in those days.”


The only fast prescribed in the Mosaic law was the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16:29) but the practice of fasting became a regular, growing from one day to four, and in addition to the public days, the third and fifth day of the week were "private" and considered a matter of "merit" because it was voluntary.


The scribes and Pharisees saw fasting as a rigorous discipline that proved their righteousness. And in fact their fasts were better when others noted-- they neglected their appearance, looked gloomy and boasted before God what they had done and who they were.


So, of course, the scribes and the Pharisees would question the authority of Jesus and His followers regarding fasting. Jesus then answers them, " Can you make the wedding guests fast, while the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come, and when the bridegroom is taken away from them, then they will fast in those days." The followers of Jesus were invited to feast with Him, the Bridegroom, while He physically was present. And now while we wait for the second coming of Christ, we fast from food and pleasurable things to remind us that the selfless love of Jesus for His Church is sufficient for us. All obstacles need to be removed as we expectantly wait for Him.


God Bless You

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