Sunday, July 27, 2008

Today's Gospel reading...

Father Cantalamessa, published by Zenit:

However, the parable does not say "a man sold everything he had and started to look for a hidden treasure." We know how such stories end: One loses what one had and finds no treasure. These are stories of dreamers, of visionaries.


No, man found a treasure and, because of this, sold all he had to buy it. In a word, it is necessary to have found the treasure to have the strength and joy to sell everything.

Leaving the parable to one side, we must first find Jesus, meet him in a personal, new and convincing way. Discover him as friend and savior. Then it will be child's play to sell everything.

It is something that will be "full of joy," as the proprietor mentioned in the Gospel.

-- from Seek the Treasure That Awaits, Gospel Commentary for 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time, By Father Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap

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Dumbstruck by the Mystery

...our temptation is always to impose our prejudices or our measure on reality -- except when we are faced with a fact that leaves us dumbstruck, and instead of dominating the fact ourselves, we are dominated, overcome by it. If there were no moments of this kind, the Mystery could do anything, but in the end, we would reduce everything to the usual explanation. But not even a Nobel Prize winner can stop himself from being dumbstruck before an absolutely gratuitous gesture. If there were not these moments, we would find answers, explanations, and interpretations to avoid being struck by anything. It is good that some things happen that we cannot dominate, then we have to take them seriously, and this is the great question of philosophy. If the conditions for the possibility of knowledge (see Kant) impose themselves on reality or if there is something that is so powerfully disproportionate that it does not let itself be "grasped" by the conditions of possibility, then the horizon opens. If this were not the case, then we could dominate everything and be in peace, or at least without drama. Instead, not even the intelligence of a Nobel Prize winner could prevent him from coming face-to-face with a fact that made him dumbstruck -- instead of dominating, it was he who was dominated. Here begins the drama, because I am called to answer. It is the drama that unfolds between us and the Mystery, through certain facts, certain moments, in which the Mystery imposes itself with this evidence. These are facts that we cannot put in our pocket, which we cannot reduce to antecedent factors.
-- Julian Carron in "Friends, that is, Witnesses."