Posted by: frburke23 | November 4, 2016

Thought for Friday, 31st Week of Ordinary Time

Philippians 3:17—4:1
Join with others in being imitators of me, brothers and sisters,
and observe those who thus conduct themselves
according to the model you have in us.
For many, as I have often told you
and now tell you even in tears,
conduct themselves as enemies of the cross of Christ.
Their end is destruction.
Their God is their stomach;
their glory is in their “shame.”
Their minds are occupied with earthly things.
But our citizenship is in heaven,
and from it we also await a savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
He will change our lowly body
to conform with his glorified Body
by the power that enables him also
to bring all things into subjection to himself.
Therefore, my brothers and sisters,
whom I love and long for, my joy and crown,
in this way stand firm in the Lord, beloved.
========================
Today is the feast day of St. Charles Borromeo, who was one of the leaders of the Counter-Reformation in the 16th century. He is the patron saint of seminaries. He developed a formal way to educate priests as a way of strengthening the Church during a very turbulent time. We pray that all of our seminaries are blessed and that they form healthy, holy and happy priests for years to come.
 
St. Paul’s words in the first line of this passage can sound rather arrogant: “be imitators of me”. St. Paul is not trying to trumpet his own greatness. Rather, it is out of his love for the people that St. Paul is trying to encourage them to live for Christ and not of the world. He speaks through his own tears as he laments how many people live selfish lives, ignoring what Jesus did on the cross for them. St. Paul truly loves his people and wants what is best for them – their salvation.
 
Parents can probably understand what St. Paul was feeling. Have you ever had your children stray from the path that you have tried to show them? Have they made poor choices and found heartache, pain and trouble? St. Paul feels this way toward his spiritual children. He knows the way toward joy and peace – it is by making Jesus Christ the center of our lives. It is by doing the will of God in our lives.
 
Next week is National Vocation Awareness Week. As I travel around our diocese speaking to many children about vocations, I often ask them, “How many of you want to be millionaires?” Most of their hands go up. Then I ask them, “Why?” They usually say that they can buy everything they want, travel the world and not have any worries. They are being taught by our media that money will make them happy. But I am completely convinced that true happiness and fulfillment comes when we seek God’s will and follow it. We have the freedom to do whatever we want, but God created us, knows us intimately and desires the best for us. God has a plan that will ultimately fulfill us and further His Kingdom on earth.
 
Have I sought God’s will in my life?
Do I trust God enough to follow His will?
Am I focused on the things of this world or on the things of heaven?
Am I imitating St. Paul or am I being conformed to this world?
 
Have a blessed day!
Fr. Burke
 
Here is the Spanish translation:
 
Filipenses 3,17-21.4,1.
Sigan mi ejemplo, hermanos, y observen atentamente
a los que siguen el ejemplo que yo les he dado.
Porque ya les advertí frecuentemente y ahora les repito llorando:
hay muchos que se portan como enemigos de la cruz de Cristo.
Su fin es la perdición, su dios es el vientre,
su gloria está en aquello que los cubre de vergüenza,
y no aprecian sino las cosas de la tierra
En cambio, nosotros somos ciudadanos del cielo,
y esperamos ardientemente que venga de allí
como salvador el Señor Jesucristo.
El transformará nuestro pobre cuerpo mortal,
haciéndolo semejante a su cuerpo glorioso,
con el poder que tiene para poner todas las cosas
bajo su dominio. Por eso, hermanos míos muy queridos,
a quienes tanto deseo ver,
ustedes que son mi alegría y mi corona,
amados míos, perseveren firmemente en el Señor.
===================
Hoy es la fiesta de San Carlos Borromeo, que fue uno de los líderes de la Contra-Reforma en el siglo 16. Él es el santo patrón de los seminarios. Desarrolló una manera formal para educar a los sacerdotes como una forma de fortalecer la Iglesia durante un tiempo muy turbulento. Oramos para que todos nuestros seminarios son bendecidos y que forman sacerdotes sanos, felices y santos para los próximos años.
 
Las Palabras de San Pablo en la primera línea de este pasaje puede sonar bastante vanidosas: “Sean imitadores míos”. San Pablo no está tratando de ensalzar su propia grandeza; al contrario, es a través de su amor por la gente que San Pablo trata de animarlos a que vivan por Cristo y no por el mundo. El habla a través de sus propias lágrimas mientras se lamenta de cómo muchos viven vidas egoístamente, ignorando lo que hizo Jesús en la Cruz por ellos. San Pablo verdaderamente ama a su pueblo y quiere lo mejor para ellos.
 
Tal vez ustedes padres de familia pueden comprender este sentimiento de San Pablo. ¿Alguna vez se han desviado sus hijos del camino que ustedes han tratado de mostrarles? ¿Han tomado otro camino y encontraron angustia, dolor y problemas? San Pablo se siente de esta manera hacia sus hijos espirituales. Él conoce el camino hacia la alegría y la paz – es haciendo a Jesucristo el centro de nuestras vidas. Es haciendo la voluntad de Dios en nuestras vidas.
 
La próxima semana es la Semana Nacional de Concientización de Vocaciones y yo he estado viajando alrededor de nuestra diócesis hablando con muchos niños sobre las vocaciones. A menudo les pregunto, “¿Cuántos de ustedes quieren ser millonarios?” La mayoría de sus manos se levantan. Luego les pregunto, “¿Por qué?” Usualmente dicen que pueden comprar todo lo que quieran, viajar por el mundo y no tener preocupaciones. Ellos están siendo enseñados por nuestros medios de comunicación que el dinero los hará felices. Pero yo estoy completamente convencido de que la verdadera felicidad y satisfacción viene cuando buscamos la voluntad de Dios y la seguimos. Tenemos la libertad de hacer lo que queramos, pero Dios nos creó, nos conoce íntimamente y desea lo mejor para nosotros.
 
¿Confío en Dios lo suficiente para seguir Su voluntad?
¿Estoy enfocado en las cosas de este mundo o en las cosas del cielo?
¿Estoy imitando a San Pablo o estoy conforme a este mundo?
¡Tengan un día bendecido!
Fr. Burke

Responses

  1. God Bless you Fr. Burke! I enjoy these readings so much. A friend of mine shared them with me a couple of months ago and I feel they have helped me grow so much closer to our Lord. Thank you for your wisdom and love of the faith.

    Kind regards,

    Sean

    >

    • Praise be to God!

  2. Dear Fr. Burke, Congratulations for the Cubs and being their Chaplain. It was such an exciting game. Love, Julio and Elaine Jimenez

    • Thanks! It was an amazing run!


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