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Responsorial Psalm 68:2-3ab, 4-5acd, 6-7ab

R. (33a) Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth. God arises; his enemies are scattered, and those who hate him flee before him. As smoke is driven away, so are they driven; as wax melts before the fire. (R) But the just rejoice and exult before God; they are glad and rejoice. Sing to God, chant praise to his name; whose name is the LORD. (R) The father of orphans and the defender of widows is God in his holy dwelling. God gives a home to the forsaken; he leads forth prisoners to prosperity. (R)


Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth.

Today is the first day of a two day celebration of the Shavuot also known as the Feast of Weeks. It was one of the three biblically ordained Pilgrimage Festivals-Pesach (Passover or Feast of Unleaven Bread), Shavuot (Weeks or Hebrew Pentecost), and Sukkot (Tabernacles, Tents or Booths). Shavuot occurs fifty days after the first day of Passover. It commemorates the anniversary of the giving of the Torah by God to the Children of Israel at Mount Sinai seven weeks after the Exodus.

The Torah is read all night as is the Book of Ruth. The synagogue is decorated with greenery. Dairy and bread are eaten. People brought to the Temple in Jerusalem the seven species for which the Land of Israel is praised: wheat, barley, grapes, figs, pomegranates, olives and dates. They were to praise God for the good country He had given them. The baskets of foods were decorated with flowers and a great parade or procession took place with lots of music.

Jesus grew up with these traditions. Can you imagine Him reading the Torah, participating in the procession, and enjoying the foods? Helping His parents decorate the home?

There are many times that our hearts are not where they should be. Let the Holy Spirit lead us when reading the bible. He will help us get to know God and His love for us. The example set by Jesus will set us straight. Imagine if we all read the bible as the Torah was read during the time of Jesus. Would not our hearts be on fire?

Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth.


PAPA Foundation
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