Posted by: frburke23 | June 5, 2016

Thought for 10th Sunday in Ordinary Time

LUKE 7:11-17
Jesus journeyed to a city called Nain,
and his disciples and a large crowd accompanied him.
As he drew near to the gate of the city,
a man who had died was being carried out,
the only son of his mother, and she was a widow.
A large crowd from the city was with her.
When the Lord saw her,
he was moved with pity for her and said to her,
“Do not weep.”
He stepped forward and touched the coffin;
at this the bearers halted,
and he said, “Young man, I tell you, arise!”
The dead man sat up and began to speak,
and Jesus gave him to his mother.
Fear seized them all, and they glorified God, crying out
“A great prophet has arisen in our midst, “
and “God has visited his people.”
This report about him spread through the whole of Judea
and in all the surrounding region.
The story from Luke above is the Gospel for this Sunday’s Mass. As Jesus was traveling with His disciples and a large group of followers, they encountered a funeral procession. A widow was burying her only son. You can imagine the pain she was experiencing. She already lost her husband and now her only son was dead. And in that culture, the women only had stature through the men in their lives. (Side note – this is why Jesus gave Mary to John from the cross, because Joseph had already died, Jesus was an only Son, and He didn’t want Mary to be alone.)
Looking upon the widow burying her son, Jesus was “moved with pity for her and said to her, ‘Do not weep.’” Jesus’ heart goes out to anyone who is suffering. Jesus might even have been thinking about His own mother Mary, who would be grieving His death on the cross. And just as Jesus would rise from the dead, Jesus raised the widow’s son from the dead. Both this widow and Mary would rejoice that their sons were alive again.
What does this have to do with us in 2016?
1) We all go through tremendous suffering at times. Maybe you are in the middle of great suffering right now. Family members die, we experience physical illness, we have difficulties at work, our children stray from the path, etc. Our faith is attacked. Some attack us personally for our beliefs. You might feel all alone like this widow in today’s Gospel. In His compassion (which means to “suffer with”), Jesus understands our suffering. He understands what suffering is all about. His heart goes out to us in love and mercy. He wants to give you peace in the middle of the storm.
2) You are important in God’s eyes. There are times that you may feel insignificant or all alone. That widow in Nain probably felt that way also. When her son died she thought her life would be over. She felt insignificant. And yet God intervened and showed her His love. God knows us and loves us in a very particular way. Even among the 7 billion people on earth, He loves you in a special way. You are never alone.
God is with you always, no matter what is happening around you. Take time throughout today to speak to God. You are never alone.
Some questions to ponder this week:
1) Do I believe that God loves me?
2) Do I believe I am never alone?
3) How can I reprioritize my day to include time with God?
Have a blessed day!
Fr. Burke
Spanish translation:
LUCAS 7:11-17
En aquel tiempo, se dirigía Jesús a una población llamada Naím, acompañado de sus discípulos y de mucha gente. Al llegar a la entrada de la población, se encontró con que sacaban a enterrar a un muerto, hijo único de una viuda, a la que acompañaba una gran muchedumbre.
Cuando el Señor la vio, se compadeció de ella y le dijo: “No llores”. Acercándose al ataúd, lo tocó, y los que lo llevaban se detuvieron. Entonces Jesús dijo: “Joven, yo te lo mando: levántate”. Inmediatamente el que había muerto se levantó y comenzó a hablar. Jesús se lo entregó a su madre.
Al ver esto, todos se llenaron de temor y comenzaron a glorificar a Dios, diciendo: “Un gran profeta ha surgido entre nosotros. Dios ha visitado a su pueblo”.
La noticia de este hecho se divulgó por toda Judea y por las regiones circunvecinas.
La historia anterior de Lucas es el Evangelio de la Misa de este domingo. Mientras Jesús viajaba con Sus discípulos y un gran grupo de seguidores, se encontraron con una procesión funeraria. Una viuda estaba enterrando a su único hijo. Puedes imaginar el dolor que estaba experimentando. Ella ya perdió a su esposo y ahora su único hijo había muerto. Y en esa cultura, las mujeres sólo tenían estatus a través de los hombres en sus vidas. (Nota – es por esto que Jesús dio a María a Juan desde la cruz, porque José ya había muerto, Jesús era hijo único, y Él no quería que María quedara sola.)
Ver a la viuda enterrar a su hijo, Jesús “se compadeció de ella y le dijo: ‘no llores’”. El corazón de Jesús está con cualquiera que sufre. Jesús, incluso, pudo haber estado pensando en Su propia madre María, quien estaría sufriendo Su muerte en la cruz. Y así como Jesús resucitaría de entre los muertos, Jesús resucitó de entre los muertos al hijo de la viuda. Tanto esta viuda y María se alegrarían de que sus hijos estaban vivos de nuevo.
¿Qué tiene que ver esto con nosotros en el 2016?
1) Todos a veces pasamos por un enorme sufrimiento. Talvez ahora estas en medio de un gran sufrimiento. Miembros de la familia mueren, experimentamos la enfermedad física, tenemos dificultades en el trabajo, nuestros hijos se desvían del camino, etc. Nuestra fe es atacada. Algunos nos atacan personalmente por nuestras creencias. Puedes sentirte solo, como esta viuda en el Evangelio de hoy. En Su compasión (que significa “sufrir con”), Jesús entiende nuestro sufrimiento. Él entiende lo que es el sufrimiento. Su corazón está con nosotros en amor y misericordia. Él quiere darte paz en medio de la tormenta.
2) Eres importante a los ojos de Dios. Hay momentos en que puedes sentirte insignificante o completamente solo. Esa viuda en Naím probablemente se sintió de esa manera también. Cuando su hijo murió pensó que su vida habría terminado. Se sentía insignificante. Y sin embargo, Dios intervino y le mostró Su amor. Dios nos conoce y nos ama de una manera muy particular. Incluso entre los 7 mil millones de personas en la tierra, Él te ama de una manera especial. Nunca estás solo.
Dios está contigo siempre, no importa lo que está sucediendo a tu alrededor. Toma tiempo a lo largo de hoy para hablar con Dios. Nunca estás solo.
Algunas preguntas para meditar esta semana:
¿Creo que Dios me ama?
¿Creo que nunca estoy solo?
¿Cómo puedo re-priorizar mi día para incluir tiempo con Dios?
¡Que tengas un día bendecido!
Padre Burke


  1. Hi Fr. Burke, Again Sue & I are forever grateful & blessed to receive your Thoughts! Thank you! I will be honest, disappointed you did not respond to my last reply but understand that you can’t reply to everyone . As I mentioned in my last reply I have a completely different perspective from my particular set of circumstances (which I’m certain you know)! Sue and make time every morning of our lives to listen to Christ through prayer and His Holy Scriptures. Secondly we pray that we never lose our child like amazement / teachable attitudes. With that said I know you have to shepherd those who want and are looking to be shepherd, but don’t forget those who feel a million different things about themselves, the church and yes even about the Church leaders etc… I know you all have an amazingly large audience with a very minute amount of time to get your point across. Believe you / me as I started you do a very wonderful / exceptional job (you really open / give yourself) allowing the Holy Spirit to work through you. Amen ! Miss you and love you! In Christ & Love, Bill & Sue Crow Luke 7:14 He stepped forward and touched the coffin.

    Sent from my iPhone


    • Bill, thanks for your comments and I’m sorry I didn’t respond to your earlier post. I just have too many things going. I apologize. I appreciate your perspective and would love to talk to you about it. It would be good for me to hear. It is one of the challenges of preaching/writing – the audience is so diverse with different perspectives, life experiences, etc. Call me and we can do a meal some time… Peace, Fr. Burke

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