Mary Joshi

When Life Gives You Lemons….

Today’s gospel includes an odd parable that had me confused for years. Why does Jesus seem to praise a scoundrel whose biggest concern is saving his own skin? Perhaps a bit of background about the culture of Jesus’ time may help to explain this parable.

It was common in Jesus’ day for landowners to lease out smaller plots of land to tenant farmers who were often too poor to own the land themselves. If the landowner owned several tracts of land, he might hire a ...

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To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good

In the last several years, there has been a gradual change in how countries, and even individuals, define themselves and their place in the world. Policies that promote separation and “walls” show a tendency to divide humanity by defining one another as either “them” or “us” and having one objective in mind – to keep “them” out and to protect what is “ours.”  I’m not immune to this attitude even in my own life, as I find myself more adamant about protecting “my personal space” and “me ...

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The Lord helps me…..and I know that I shall not be put to shame

In many churches around the world today, people will hear the story of Jesus’ final entry into Jerusalem and they will then be invited to take their palms and process into or around the church waving those palms and singing “Hosanna!” The invitation is usually met with varying degrees of enthusiasm and for many; there is an awkward discomfort about it all.  Some who feel it is just too weird, opt to stay in their pews and observe from a safe distance. Well, if it feels ...

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Blessed is the one who trust in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord

Over the years I’ve found that few teachings of Jesus are meant to be viewed as “required” behaviours, needed to please God and earn a place in heaven, as they are about a God who is already pleased by our existence and would love to see us live a life filled with meaning and joy. Luke’s gospel of “Blessings and Woes” is a shorter version of Matthew’s “Beatitudes” (Mt 5:1-11) and teach less about rules to be followed, as attitudes by which to live life more ...

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See. I have come to do your will, O God

No matter how often Scripture tells us that “God’s ways” are not the ways of humanity, many of us still see our relationship with God in terms of our human social values. Each of today’s three readings reminds us how God often acts in unexpected ways.

“You, O Bethlehem… one of the little clans of Judea, from you ...

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Take heart; get up, he is calling you

“What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asks his disciples in last week’s gospel and again of Bartimaeus in today’s. Their responses couldn’t be more different. The disciples showed that even though they had been with Jesus for a while, they still didn’t understand his purpose or message, for they asked for positions of privilege in his new “kingdom.” Bartimaeus, ...

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Christ is the mediator of a new covenant!

The way in which we celebrate the Eucharist today is steeped in a tradition that is described in today’s first reading from Exodus, although you may not initially recognize it in the somewhat gruesome details of the story.

Moses builds an altar and gathers together the newly liberated Israelites. Representatives of the twelve tribes of Israel are invited to bring sacrifices for the burnt ...

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This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad!

Once again, we sing, “Alleluia!” this weekend – an acclamation of praise and rejoicing that we have not heard in our liturgies since before Ash Wednesday. Perhaps it is because winter seems to be hanging on too long, or maybe because the news of the world is so depressing, but “Rejoice!” is not the word I’d use to express my inner most feelings of late. We hear of the unending attacks ...

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I will raise up for them a Prophet…

“I will raise up for them a Prophet like you from among their own kin; I will put my words in [their] mouth”

As I had grown up in the 70’s and 80’s, when someone was described as “a prophet,” I usually pictured a cartoon-like hippie with a robe and long beard carrying a sign stating, “The end is near!” Prophets had often been ...

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Truly I Tell You…

“Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did it to me.”

We hear the question, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?” twice in our gospel ...

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