Preacher’s Sketchbook: Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

November 13, 2012

Each week, a Dominican member of the Province of St. Joseph’s Preaching Advisory Board prepares this Preacher’s Sketchbook in anticipation of the upcoming Sunday Mass. The idea of the Preacher’s Sketchbook is to take quotations from the authority of the Church–the Pope, the Fathers of the Church, documents of the Councils, the saints–that can help spark ideas for the Sunday homily. Just as an artist’s sketchbook preserves ideas for later elaboration, so we hope the Preacher’s Sketchbook will provide some ideas for homiletical elaboration.


Catechism of the Catholic Church, 992

God revealed the resurrection of the dead to his people progressively. Hope in the bodily resurrection of the dead established itself as a consequence intrinsic to faith in God as creator of the whole man, soul and body. The creator of heaven and earth is also the one who faithfully maintains his covenant with Abraham and his posterity. It was in this double perspective that faith in the resurrection came to be expressed. In their trials, the Maccabean martyrs confessed: The King of the universe will raise us up to an everlasting renewal of life, because we have died for his laws. One cannot but choose to die at the hands of men and to cherish the hope that God gives of being raised again by him.

Divino Afflante Spiritu, 61

Let the present-day commentators of the Sacred Scripture emulate, according to their capacity, what those illustrious interpreters of past ages accomplished with such great fruit; so that, as in the past, so also in these days, the Church may have at her disposal learned doctors for the expounding of the Divine Letters; and, through their assiduous labors, the faithful may comprehend all the splendor, stimulating language, and joy contained in the Holy Scriptures. And in this very arduous and important office let them have “for their comfort the Holy Books” (1 Macc 12:9) and be mindful of the promised reward: since “they that are learned shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and they that instruct many unto justice, as stars for all eternity” (Dan 12:3)

St. Thomas Aquinas, OP, On Inducing Others to Enter Religious Life, Summa Theologica, II-II, q. 189, a. 9

Therefore one man should draw another to God’s service.  I answer that, Those who induce others to enter religion not only do not sin, but merit a great reward. For it is written (James 5:20): “He who causeth a sinner to be converted from the error of his way, shall save his soul from death, and shall cover a multitude of sins”; and (Dan 12:3): “They that instruct many to justice shall be as stars for all eternity.”

St. Thomas Aquinas, OP, On the Daily Reception of Holy Communion, Summa Theologica, III, q. 180, a. 10

In the sacrament of Baptism a man is conformed to Christ’s death, by receiving His character within him. And therefore, as Christ died but once, so a man ought to be baptized but once. But a man does not receive Christ’s character in this sacrament; He receives Christ Himself, Whose virtue endures for ever. Hence it is written (Heb 10:14): “By one oblation He hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.” Consequently, since man has daily need of Christ’s health-giving virtue, he may commendably receive this sacrament every day.And since Baptism is above all a spiritual regeneration, therefore, as a man is born naturally but once, so ought he by Baptism to be reborn spiritually but once, as Augustine says (Tract. xi in Joan.), commenting on Jn 3:4, “How can a man be born again, when he is grown old?” But this sacrament is spiritual food; hence, just as bodily food is taken every day, so is it a good thing to receive this sacrament every day

Pope Pius XII, Mediator Dei

Now the Apostle of the Gentiles proclaims the copious plenitude and the perfection of the sacrifice of the cross, when he says that Christ by one oblation has perfected for ever them that are sanctified (Cf. Heb 10:14). For the merits of this sacrifice, since they are altogether boundless and immeasurable, know no limits; for they are meant for all men of every time and place. This follows from the fact that in this sacrifice the God-Man is the priest and victim; that His immolation was entirely perfect, as was His obedience to the will of His eternal Father; and also that He suffered death as the Head of the human race: “See how we were bought: Christ hangs upon the cross, see at what a price He makes His purchase … He sheds His blood, He buys with His blood, He buys with the blood of the Spotless Lamb, He buys with the blood of God’s only Son. He who buys is Christ; the price is His blood; the possession bought is the world” (Saint Augustine, Enarr. in Ps 147, n. 16).

Bl. Pope John Paul II, Wednesday Audience, November 26,1997

Although sharing the human condition, Jesus is conscious of his eternal being, which confers a higher value on all his activities. He himself emphasized this eternal value: “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away” (Mark 13,31 par.). His words, like his actions, have a unique, definitive value, and will continue to call for a response from humanity until the end of time.



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