Reflection on the Daily Readings for 2/09/09 by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM

Today's Readings

Scripture: Tuesday of 5th week. Feb.10,2009. Genesis 1:2:4. Psalm
8:4-5.6-7.8-9. Mark 7:1-13. Lectionary # 330:

Psalm 8 was the Psalm chosen for celebrating one of the greatest of
human achievements, the landing on the moon.  It is a perfect prayer for
that occasion and it is even more perfect for praising God for the creation
of all forms of life in today's reading about day five, six, and seven.  We
are listening to the tradition called the Priestly Tradition so praise is
fitting to God our loving creator.  The writer of Psalm 8 realized this and
in some respects was reflecting on one of the most gracious and magnanimous
acts of God recorded in the history of humankind! "Let us make us make
Adamah (humankind) in our image, after our likeness...God created Adamah
(humanbeings) in his image: in the divine image he created Adamah, male and
female he created them." (Genesis 1:26-27).

Today then we read of vegetative life, sentient life--marine and
terrestrial-- and rational creatures coming into existence in kairos time
(not chronological time) in the one who hands down this inspired account.
All comes from God when it is a question of life that is rendered so
beautifully and dignified in the Genesis account. Our dignity as men and
women is given through the creative love of God for us and when we think
about it, it is from this passage that the commandment of love of our
neighbor is founded in the mind and action of God for this universe.   We
all are children of God and should realize this each day of our lives as we
interact with one another as brothers and sisters in the family of God our
loving Creator. The peaceful beginning should be continued in every
generation, but as our story unfolds we discover we have not paid attention
to the original happy thought of our beginnings.  As believers we have the
summons to re-create this beginning each day, at least, in the realm of
life and action where we are now. Unity and peace can only come about with
all of us endeavoring to re-create what God gave us at the beginning. This
effort requires of us to use our God-given highest gifts of intellect,
will, and creative imagination.

Our passage from Mark shows the time of the Church after Jesus even
though Mark puts this into the life of Jesus. It is a sad passage for Mark
is showing us the separation of the People of God (the Jews) from the
Gentile Christians and those Jews who came over to belief in Jesus as the
Messiah.  There is a certain polemical thrust to the passage that belittles
the practices dear to the People of God, Jesus' own people.  The religious
practices and rituals of another religion are not to be treated in that
fashion. Until the three great monotheistic religions offer such respect
and dignity to one another we will not have peace and unity in this world.
God wants us again to use our best gifts, our gifts of dignity and freedom,
mind, heart, soul, will, and creative imagination through joining one
another in praying for peace, in working for justice, and in dialoguing,
triologuing with each other.  This is what gives us hope that one day we
may all return to the Original Blessing of Genesis, chapter one.  Amen.