Covenantal Love

Chapter Talks

Listen to God speaking to the prophet Jeremiah: “This is the new covenant I will make: Deep within them I will plant my Law, writing it on their hearts” (Jer 32: 31,33).  What is a covenant?  It is a relationship between God and the believing community.  It is both personal and communal.  God writes on the heart his Law…the Law of love…this is the new covenant.  This covenant is the eternal word that transcends time and culture…what was written perdures….it is eternal, God given, God sustained.  No evil…nothing has power over what God has written upon the heart, nothing can break this covenant…what is written is the transforming power of God’s love…which contains forgiveness and mercy. 

March 22, 2021 Read More

Imago Dei

Chapter Talks

What is our image of God in terms of divine judgment?  If we examine this question in the Hebrew Bible, we get multiple views and images.  From a God who exacts retribution on its people who go against God’s law and ways.  Then, to a God who relents from the punishment that God initially decides to do after seeing the people turning from their evil ways and repenting in a sincere, humble way.  A repentant people moves the heart of God, causing God to change, to relinquish the destruction God had planned.  Once Jesus comes on the scene, we see a further shift in the image of God, one that is fully embodied by Jesus. 

March 14, 2021 Read More

A Cleansing of the Heart

Chapter Talks

As we reflect on the gospel account from John’s gospel of Jesus throwing out the money changers from the temple, let us ponder: what horizon is Jesus living from?  How would you describe it?  And then, what about the horizon of the money changers?  What are they living from in their encounter with Jesus?  As we reflect on these questions we might also ponder: what is a true house of God?  What is true worship?  In this encounter of Jesus with the money changers in the temple, is it more about law or is it rather about the heart? 

March 07, 2021 Read More

The Beloved

Chapter Talks

In today’s gospel for the Second Sunday of Lent what is moving to note is that this is the second and last time we hear God speaking directly and verbally to Jesus in the gospels.  The first time is at Jesus’ baptism: “And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my Son, the Beloved; my favor rests on you’” (Mk 1:11).  And then the last time at Jesus’ Transfiguration: “There came a voice from the cloud, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved.  Listen to him’” (Mk 9:8).  What is striking from both events is the love bestowed, and then a love that becomes the bond, that seals the relationship: Father to Son, Son to Father.  From this it becomes clear that God’s gift to us is his beloved Son. These two encounters with God in Jesus’ life are events where the voice of God is saying and confirming to Jesus, ‘You are my beloved Son’.  In today’s gospel God adds: ‘Listen to him’, listen to my beloved Son.  We are thus being invited into relationship with Jesus and through him to God…and we are asked to ‘listen’, to listen to Jesus.

February 28, 2021 Read More

A Deeper Joy

Chapter Talks

“At all times the lifestyle of a monk ought to have a Lenten quality” (Benedict’s Rule, A Translation and Commentary, RB 49:1, Terrance Kardong, p.402).  Now this sounds heavy, does it not?  However, if we reflect more on chapter 49 of the Rule, we will see that Benedict has a healthy and profound theological perspective on Lent.

February 21, 2021 Read More
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