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SATURDAY OF THE SIXTEENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME MEMORIAL ST CHARBEL MAKHLOUF JULY 24, 2021







A Reading from the Book of Exodus Ex 24:3-8


When Moses came to the people and related all the words and ordinances of the LORD, they all answered with one voice, “We will do everything that the LORD has told us.” Moses then wrote down all the words of the LORD and, rising early the next day, he erected at the foot of the mountain an altar and twelve pillars for the twelve tribes of Israel. Then, having sent certain young men of the children of Israel to offer burnt offerings and sacrifice young bulls as peace offerings to the LORD, Moses took half of the blood and put it in large bowls; the other half he splashed on the altar. Taking the book of the covenant, he read it aloud to the people, who answered, “All that the LORD has said, we will heed and do.” Then he took the blood and sprinkled it on the people, saying, “This is the blood of the covenant that the LORD has made with you in accordance with all these words of his.”


REFLECTION

“All that the LORD has said, we will heed and do.”


Since the Old Testament, we have been promising, “All that the LORD has said, we will heed and do.”


And have we kept that promise? In the reading from Exodus, we see God making a covenant with His people with burnt offerings and young bulls as peace offerings. In the Psalm we sing of the sacrifice of praise, and fulfillment of the vows to the Most High.


In the New Testament we are likened to the good seed sowed among the sowed weeds. We are invited to come and inherit the Kingdom of Heaven, to dwell with Jesus as our reward for following His commandments.


But in 2021, how do we know that we will inherit the Kingdom of Heaven? Have we heeded and done all that the Lord has said? Have we offered peace offerings and sacrifices? Are we the good seed or the bad seed?


Our saint for the day is St Charbel Makhlouf. Born in Lebanon in 1828, Yussef Antoun Makhlouf was the youngest of five children. His father died at a young age, so Yussef worked hard labor at an early age. He, however, did not allow the mishaps and misfortunes of his family life to affect him. He contemplated Jesus during his work, becoming a monk and later a priest. He was deeply devoted to the Eucharistic presence, serving 23 years in ascetism and profound union with Christ. He was able to unite Christians with Muslims. The diversity and unity in the Catholic Church is evident in the life of St Charbel Makhlouf.


Like all the saints, St Charbel points us to God and invites us to cooperate generously with God’s grace, no matter what our situation in life may be.


He was canonized in 1977 by Pope Paul VI. There are many reports of past and present miracles attributed to St Charbel Makhlouf.


While living with the good and the bad, may we continue loving God and our neighbor, forgiving and loving others as Jesus will do for us when He comes to judge.


God Bless You


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