Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Tax Collector

He was a tax collector.

He was despised for what he did, by much of the Jewish population at the time. As a tax collector, he was considered an outsider. He was probably literate in Aramaic and Greek, and when it came time to write his life of Jesus, early church fathers tell that it was written in Hebrew.

Today is his feast day. What can we learn from Matthew?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Drama in Three Scenes

Scene I

The young couple walked hurriedly across the Temple court. Yosef and Miryam had come to Yerushalayim to fulfill the duties required of new parents by Torah. This they had done, and now they were anxious to return home. The sun was low in the sky, and the late afternoon was already cooler.

An old man came toward them unsteadily. He reached out a shaking hand and touched the head of Miryam's first-born son. Looking intently at her, he held out his hands toward her. For no reason she could fathom, she handed Yeshua to him. He cradled the baby in his arms, gently rocking him from side to side. He looked heavenward, and began to speak.

"Now, Adonai, you have blessed your servant and may let him go in peace. I have seen with my own eyes your deliverer, visible to all, who will give light to the goyim and glory to your people Isra'el."

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Triumph of the Cross

Today is the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. What does this mean to you?

I'm not a member of the Roman Catholic church, but I do the Daily Office as they do, to the best of my ability. It's a discipline that takes time to fully engage with, but I've found that I have a more serene and more gentle day when I do it, than when I don't. Go figure - praying the Psalms at more or less regular times just does that.

In the process of doing the Hours, I encounter special selections of Psalms, Canticles, and Readings for the various feasts and solemnities. Today we were celebrating the Triumph of the Cross.