Thursday, July 15, 2021

The Feast of Our Lady of Carmel.

“See, your disciples are doing what is unlawful to do on the sabbath.” (Matthew 12: 2).

Friday 16th July 2021, in the 15th Week in Ordinary is the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.

What words do we associate with Mount Carmel? The Prophet Elijah, the Carmelite Order, St. Simon Stock.
On July 16, 1251 the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to St Simon Stock, the Superior General of the Carmelites in England and gave him the brown scapula. Mary promised her protection to all those who wear the scapula. This is the origin of the devotion of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and the Brown Scapula. The brown scapula is one of the numerous sacramentals of the Church.

In our Gospel Reading for today, Jesus said something that must have astonished His Jewish audience:
"I say to you, something greater than the temple is here."  (Matthew 12: 6).  And He added:
"For the Son of Man is Lord of the sabbath.”  (Matthew 12: 8).

The Sabbath is a sacred Covenant between God and His people.  "Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy" (Exodus 20: 8). And then the Lord blessed the Sabbath Rest.

How the Sabbath is to be observed became a sore point of controversy between Jesus and the Jewish leaders.  The Pharisees wanted a strict adherence to the Sabbath code. Jesus teaches God's intention in establishing the Sabbath.  God gave the Sabbath both for rest and worship. The Pharisees had lost sight of this two fold objectives. The One who made the laws in the first place quickly asserted His authority over the Sabbath.

"Sunday is the day of My holy and glorious resurrection," says Jesus to the mystic. "I will open your eyes to the vision of My Father and draw you with Me into His embrace. Be mindful on Sundays of the labours of your brothers in the sacred ministry. Seek for them spiritual refreshment and energy in My Eucharistic presence. Sunday evening through Monday, you will do well to recall the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, for that is the third gift and mystery of the cenacle." (IN SINU JESU page 81).

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