16th Sunday Ordinary Time - Year B - 2021

Jul 18, 2021 07:00 · 4602 words · 22 minute read

Welcome to St. Ignatius Chapel. Today we celebrate the 16th Sunday in Ordinary Time.

00:08 - Our celebrant today is Jesuit Fr. Russell Pollitt SJ.

00:46 - In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

00:49 - [Amen. ] The grace and the peace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

00:55 - [And with your spirit. ] We come before the Lord, we come with our whole lives, knowing that we are weak and frail.

01:05 - Yet asking the Lord for courage and for strength to be witnesses of his kingdom today.

01:12 - For the frailty we see within ourselves let’s ask the Lord now for mercy and forgiveness.

01:22 - Have mercy on us, O Lord. [For we have sinned against you. ] Show us, O Lord, your mercy.

01:29 - [And grant us your salvation. ] May almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins and bring us to life everlasting.

01:36 - [Amen. ] Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to people of good will.

01:42 - We praise you, we bless you, we adore you, we glorify you, we give you thanks for your great glory, Lord God, heavenly King, O God, almighty Father.

01:54 - Lord Jesus Christ, Only Begotten Son, Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us; you take away the sins of the world, receive our prayer; you are seated at the right hand of the Father, have mercy on us.

02:13 - For you alone are the Holy One, you alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father.

02:25 - Amen. And let us pray: Show favour, O Lord, to your servants and mercifully increase the gifts of your grace, that made fervent in hope, faith and charity, they may be ever watchful in keeping your commands.

02:46 - We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever.

02:54 - [Amen. ] A reading from the Book of Jeremiah.

03:15 - “Woe to the shepherds who destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture!” says the Lord.

03:24 - Therefore thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, concerning the shepherds who care for my people: “You have scattered my flock, and have driven them away, and you have not attended to them.

03:37 - Behold, I will attend to you for your evil doings, says the Lord.

03:43 - Then I will gather the remnant of my flock out of all the countries where I have driven them, and I will bring them back to their fold, and they shall be fruitful and multiply.

03:56 - I will set shepherds over them who will care for them, and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, neither shall any be missing, says the Lord.

04:06 - “Behold, these days are coming, says the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land.

04:22 - In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely.

04:28 - And this is the name by which he will be called: ‘The Lord is our righteousness. ’ “ The word of the Lord.

04:37 - [Thanks be to God. ] The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want.

04:43 - [The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want. ] The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want.

04:53 - Fresh and green are the pastures where he gives me repose.

04:58 - Near restful waters he leads me; he revives my soul.

05:02 - [The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want. ] He guides me along the right path, for the sake of his name.

05:11 - Though I should walk in the valley of the shadow of death.

05:15 - no evil would I fear, for you are with me. Your crook and your staff will give me comfort.

05:22 - [The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want. ] You have prepared a table before me in the sight of my foes.

05:33 - My head you have anointed with oil; my cup is overflowing.

05:38 - [The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want. ] Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.

05:48 - In the Lord’s own house shall I dwell for length of days unending.

05:53 - [The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want. ] A reading from the letter of Saint Paul to the Ephesians.

06:05 - Brethren: Now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near in the blood of Christ.

06:15 - For he is our peace, who has made us both one, and has broken down the dividing wall of hostility, by abolishing in his flesh the law of commandments and ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby bringing the hostility to an end.

06:43 - And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near; for through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father.

06:57 - The word of the Lord. [Thanks be to God. ] [Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!] My sheep shall hear my voice, says the Lord; and I know them, and they follow me.

07:25 - [Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!] The Lord be with you.

07:46 - [And with your spirit] A reading from the holy Gospel according to Mark.

07:52 - [Glory to you, O Lord. ] At that time: The apostles returned to Jesus, and told him all that they had done and taught.

08:03 - And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a lonely place, and rest a while. ” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat.

08:15 - And they went away in the boat to a lonely place by themselves.

08:20 - Now many saw them going, and knew them, and they ran there on foot from all the towns, and got there ahead of them.

08:31 - As he landed he saw a great throng, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things.

08:44 - The Gospel of the Lord. [Praise to you, Lord, Jesus Christ. ] In the 2003 film, “Asylum”, we see those fleeing persecution and torture in northern Iraq.

09:11 - Three young Kurds, Mahmoud, Rezghar and Saman, smuggle themselves into Britain aboard a freight train.

09:23 - And arriving in London they register for asylum but soon they experience the first blast of bureaucracy, as their papers are lost in the system – something we think only happens in South Africa.

09:41 - And when Saman is detained in prison and the police attempt to arrest Rezghar, he flees and hides in a church where the priest, Father Michael, is leading a service.

09:56 - And so begins a lengthy standoff between the police and immigration officers and the priest as he offers sanctuary to both these men and the church becomes an intense focus of the media.

10:17 - With Father Michael under siege with armed police, and the Press, and racist neighbours, and unchristian parishioners and even his own superiors, tension mounts until something - or someone - threatens to break.

10:36 - And so Nigel Roffe-Barker’s social drama looks beyond politics to the desperate human stories behind newspaper headlines.

10:50 - Now the right to sanctuary has long been part of the tradition of the Church: in England from the 4th century people used the Church as a safe place.

11:04 - In the 1980s, when the United States experienced an influx of people from Latin America who were fleeing oppression and human rights violation by governments in South America, many sought sanctuary in the Church.

11:21 - Many Catholics who participated in liberation theology and were targeted by government forces also found sanctuary in the Church.

11:31 - And we know too that in South Africa many people in the years of apartheid sought sanctuary in the Church.

11:41 - The Prophet Jeremiah, in that first reading we hear today, speaks about the scattered people of Israel.

11:51 - And he speaks about bringing them home to a safe and prosperous place.

11:58 - He pinpoints the problem, and the problem is shepherds who do not give a damn for the people.

12:08 - Not too unlike the situation that we found ourselves in today.

12:14 - With the political shenanigans of this country in the last few weeks, and those who are powerful and have profile not giving a damn about anybody except themselves and their own well-being, doing whatever they can to avoid justice.

12:31 - In the Gospel too, we see many people coming to Jesus for physical, emotional, and spiritual sanctuary, because, we are told, they are like sheep without a shepherd.

12:46 - And so it seems to me that today we are invited to meditate on this word – sanctuary.

12:54 - Because it’s an important word in our Christian tradition.

12:57 - We are called to be a place and a space where people can find some safety, where people can find some physical, emotional and spiritual well-being.

13:13 - A few weeks ago the Jesuit Institute, with other organisations, launched a campaign called “This is Home”.

13:25 - And it highlights the plight of many children in this country who too are like sheep without a shepherd.

13:34 - Young people who are stateless, or may soon be stateless – mostly due to political red tape and hardened hearts.

13:44 - Shepherds again who don’t give a damn about people.

13:50 - And so the key questions for us, as God’s people, becomes, and I think all people of goodwill, how do we create a community of sanctuary in an environment where shepherds don’t care about the people they are supposed to look after? Nobody should feel abandoned and unprotected where they are at the mercy of unjust forces or people who are only worried about themselves and their own self-importance.

14:24 - And it seems to me to become a place of sanctuary, we need to learn and to choose how to CARE.

14:37 - And I want to suggest the word care is the invitation for us, because each of those letters broken down tells us how we truly care.

14:49 - That first C, compassion. Our ability to identify with the wounded and those in need around us, the quality of our own hearts is revealed in the way we respond to people around us, as Jesus does, with compassion.

15:15 - The second thing is awareness. We need to be aware of what is going on in our society and our world.

15:25 - The plight of others, the struggles of others should be in our consciousness.

15:31 - Social responsibility is to know what is really going on in our context.

15:38 - There are so many people these days that say things like, “I don’t watch news; I’m not really interested in what is going on. ” And one can’t blame people at times, because news media can often bend things for their own purposes.

15:56 - And yet we still need to know what is going on, so that we can be discerning.

16:04 - And at times we need to look at what news media are saying and also double check those facts, because we are very prone to being victims these days of fake news.

16:15 - And we need to teach our children how to do that.

16:19 - We need to teach them what it really means to care, teach them how to become aware and discerning of what is going on in our context.

16:33 - The R in that word, care, stands for revelation.

16:38 - It is only when our eyes fixed on the revelation of God that we truly can care for others.

16:47 - Because Jesus, the Good Shepherd, teaches us how to create sanctuary for others – how to really care for others.

16:58 - All we have to do is watch him very closely in the Gospels.

17:03 - The revelation of God which shows us the way that we should care for others.

17:12 - And finally the E, that we need to be engaged.

17:15 - There’s an invitation to engagement. Our willingness to be engaged, to work with others, to bring about the kind of sanctuary that would reveal God’s kingdom in our midst today.

17:32 - That would reveal God’s vision of community, the kind of community God invites us to be.

17:41 - And that means that we too are willing to make a contribution, are willing to take responsibility.

17:49 - We, God’s people, reveal, in our response to the world around us if we are really disciples of Jesus Christ, when we bring about God’s care for and to others.

18:09 - And if you are asking how you can do this, there are many different ways that this can be done.

18:15 - And it’s not always necessarily a financial way.

18:19 - Often we think in the Church that when we ask for assistance, people immediately have to dig deep into their pockets.

18:28 - You can take, for example, this campaign, “This Is Home”.

18:32 - You can sign up as we try and petition government to change this ridiculous law that keeps young people stateless, and therefore unable to access education, or healthcare or any other service in our society.

18:51 - You can do it by signing up and sharing this message with others.

18:56 - There already you are showing that you care by your willingness to be engaged.

19:03 - And there are many other ways one can be engaged, one can show that we truly care and are bringing about a community of sanctuary.

19:14 - Let’s pray today, that we would allow the Lord, through the harsh words of the Prophet Jeremiah, through the example that Jesus shows us as he looks upon those people and sees that they are sheep without a shepherd and chooses to care, that our hearts too would be moulded by what we hear, and therefore we too would become, a place, a community of sanctuary for those who need most our support, our help, our protection, a place that they can call home.

20:13 - Let’s pray together now the Apostle’s Creed.

20:17 - I believe in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried; he descended into hell; on the third day he rose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty; from there he will come to judge the living and the dead.

20:49 - I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.

20:59 - Amen. Let us now bring our prayers before the Lord.

21:07 - We bring the prayer of the Church, but also the prayers that we have in our own hearts, asking the Lord to mould us into a community of sanctuary.

21:35 - For the Church: that the Holy Spirit may make it one body, healed of all division.

21:44 - Lord hear us… [Lord, graciously hear us. ] That the vast amount of money being spent on armaments may be used instead to feed the hungry.

21:58 - Lord hear us… [Lord, graciously hear us. ] For those who have cut themselves off from the Church: that they may be drawn back into communion with it.

22:12 - Lord hear us… [Lord, graciously hear us. ] For ourselves: that we may be generous in sharing what we have with those who are less fortunate than ourselves.

22:26 - Lord hear us… [Lord, graciously hear us. ] For all those suffering from the Covid pandemic.

22:37 - Lord hear us… [Lord, graciously hear us. ] And for our own needs.

22:50 - Lord hear us… [Lord, graciously hear us. ] Lord our God, these are our prayers, those we speak out loud but the prayer too in the heart of each one of us.

23:04 - Mould us now into a community of care, one of sanctuary.

23:09 - As we bring these prayers to you through Christ Jesus your son and our Risen Lord.

23:15 - [Amen. ] Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation, for through your goodness we have this bread to offer: fruit of the earth, work of our human hands, it will become for us the bread of life.

23:53 - [Blessed be God for ever. ] Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation, for through your goodness we have this wine to offer: fruit of the vine, work of our human hands, it will become for us our spiritual drink.

24:14 - [Blessed be God for ever] Let’s pray sisters and brothers, that our sacrifice and the sacrifice and efforts of all our lives may be acceptable to God, the Almighty Creator.

24:33 - [May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands for the praise and glory of God’s name, for our good and the good of all God’s holy Church. ] O God, who in the one perfect sacrifice brought to completion varied offerings of the law; accept, we pray, this sacrifice from your faithful servants and make it holy, as you blessed the gifts of Abel, so that what each has offered to the honour of your majesty may benefit the salvation of all.

25:00 - We ask this through Christ our Lord. [Amen] The Lord be with you.

25:11 - [And with your spirit. ] Lift up your hearts.

25:13 - [We lift them up to the Lord. ] Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

25:16 - [It is right and just. ] It is truly right and just, our duty and our salvation, always and everywhere to give you thanks, Father of mercies and faithful God.

25:24 - For you have given us Jesus Christ, your Son, as our Lord and Redeemer.

25:28 - He always showed compassion for children and for the poor, for the sick and for sinners, and he became a neighbour to the oppressed and the afflicted.

25:37 - By word and deed he announced to the world that you are our Father and that you care for all your sons and daughters.

25:45 - And so, with all the Angels and Saints, we exalt and bless your name and sing the hymn of your glory, as without end we acclaim: Holy, Holy, Holy [Lord God of hosts.

25:55 - Heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest.

26:01 - Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

26:04 - Hosanna in the highest. ] You are indeed Holy and to be glorified, O God, who love the human race and who always walk with us on the journey of life.

26:14 - Blessed indeed is your Son, present in our midst when we are gathered by his love, and when, as once for the disciples, and so now for us, he opens the Scriptures and breaks the bread.

26:24 - Therefore, Father most merciful, we ask that you send forth your Holy Spirit to sanctify these gifts of bread and wine, that they may become the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.

26:37 - On the day before he was to suffer, on the night of the Last Supper, he took bread and said the blessing, broke the bread and gave it to his disciples, saying: TAKE THIS, ALL OF YOU AND EAT OF IT, FOR THIS IS MY BODY, WHICH WILL BE GIVEN UP FOR YOU.

27:03 - In a similar way, when supper was ended, he took the cup, gave you thanks and gave it to his disciples, saying: TAKE THIS, ALL OF YOU, AND DRINK FROM IT, FOR THIS IS THE CUP OF MY BLOOD, THE BLOOD OF THE NEW AND ETERNAL COVENANT, WHICH WILL BE POURED OUT FOR YOU AND FOR ALL FOR THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS.

27:21 - DO THIS IN MEMORY OF ME. The mystery of faith.

27:37 - When we eat this Bread and drink this Cup, we proclaim your Death, O Lord, until you come again.

27:45 - Therefore, holy Father, as we celebrate the memorial of Christ your Son, our Saviour, whom you led through his Passion and Death on the Cross to the glory of the Resurrection, and whom you have seated at your right hand, we proclaim the work of your love until he comes again and we offer you the Bread of life and the Cup of salvation.

28:02 - Look with favour on the offering of your Church, in which we show forth the paschal Sacrifice of Christ that has been handed on to us, and grant that, by the power of the Spirit of your love, we may be counted now and until the day of eternity among the members of your Son, in whose Body and Blood we have communion.

28:19 - Bring your Church, O Lord, to perfect faith and charity, together with Francis our Pope and Buti our Bishop, with all Bishops, Priests and Deacons, and the entire people you have made your own.

28:32 - Open our eyes to the needs of our brothers and sisters; inspire in us words and actions to comfort those who labour and are burdened.

28:41 - Make us serve them truly, after the example of Christ and at his command.

28:45 - And may we your Church stand as a living witness to truth and freedom, to peace and justice, that all people may be raised up to a new hope.

28:55 - Remember our brothers and sisters, who have fallen asleep in the peace of your Christ, and all the dead, whose faith you alone have known.

29:02 - Admit them to rejoice in the light of your face, and in the resurrection give them the fullness of life.

29:09 - And grant also to us, when our earthly pilgrimage is done, that we may come to an eternal dwelling place and live with you for ever; there, in communion with the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, with Saint Joseph her spouse, with the Apostles and Martyrs, and with all the Saints, we shall praise and exalt you through Jesus Christ, your Son.

29:30 - Through him, and with him, and in him, O God, almighty Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honour is yours, for ever and ever.

29:41 - [Amen. ] That we may build a community of sanctuary, let’s pray as the Lord Jesus taught us: Our Father, [who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

30:03 - Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. ] Deliver us, Lord, we pray, from every evil, and graciously grant peace in our days.

30:20 - That by the help of your mercy, we may be always free from sin and safe from all distress, as we await the blessed hope and the coming of our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

30:29 - [For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours now and for ever. ] Lord Jesus Christ, you said to your Apostles: Peace I leave you, my peace I give you, look not on our sins, but on the faith of your Church, and graciously grant her peace and unity in accordance with your will, who live and reign for ever and ever.

30:49 - [Amen. ] The peace of the Lord be with you always.

30:53 - [And with your spirit. ] Let’s spend a moment now praying for peace in our own hearts, in our families, and in our country.

31:13 - Lamb of God, [you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

31:18 - Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

31:24 - Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, grant us peace. ] Behold Jesus, the Lamb of God, behold him who takes away the sin of the world, how blessed are we who are called to share in the supper of the Lamb.

31:43 - [Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed. ] May the Body and Blood of Christ bring all of us, our family, our friends and all people to life everlasting.

31:56 - [Amen. ] Although you cannot receive physical communion with us now, we invite you into a moment of spiritual communion.

32:13 - The great medieval theologian, St. Thomas Aquinas, defined spiritual communion as: “an ardent desire to receive Jesus in the Holy Sacrament”, and “a loving embrace as though we had already received him. ” His words are echoed by the great mystic, and fellow doctor of the church, St. Teresa of Avila, who wrote: “When you do not receive Communion, and do not attend Mass, you can make a spiritual communion which is a most beneficial practice.

32:45 - By it, the love of God will be greatly impressed on you. ” At this moment we invite you to focus on Christ, and your longing for union with him.

32:59 - Express your desire to feel his grace coursing through you, giving you strength and courage, particularly in these difficult times.

33:09 - In your desiring union you are united with us, and to Christ.

33:15 - In this moment we experience the reality that is already here.

34:51 - Let us pray. Graciously be present to your people, we pray, O Lord, and lead those you have imbued with heavenly mysteries to pass from former ways to newness of life.

35:06 - We ask this through Christ our Lord. [Amen. ] The Lord be with you.

35:12 - [And with your spirit] May almighty God bless you, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

35:17 - [Amen. ] Go now in the peace of Christ.

35:21 - [Thanks be to God. ].