Posted by: fvbcdm | March 1, 2013

Feast of Saint Leolucas of Corleone (1 Mar 2013)

Let’s give some thought today to the fact that we are at the first of March in this new year of grace, [2013].  I wish you a happy month of March; the month will bring us [the election of a new pope], the beginning of the season of spring, the celebration of the Feast of Saint Joseph on the 19th, [Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday].  And I invite you to rededicate yourself to the glory and honor and praise of our God during this new month of ours—a new chapter in what we hope will be an entire life of adoration, worship, and love.

Then, in the gospel of today’s Mass, we hear Our Lord saying to the highest authorities of the people of his time, “the stone which you have rejected has become the cornerstone of the new structure: the new temple, the new Jerusalem, the new covenant.”

Stone is solid, strong, firm, dependable, reliable. That is why Our Lord uses the figure of stone twice that we know of in speaking of the work he does in sacred history. Here, he speaks of himself as the cornerstone, upon which an edifice is aligned. It is he himself who gives to the kingdom of God upon earth the directions in terms of length and width and height. And then elsewhere, when speaking of the establishment of his Church, he says to Simon bar-Jona, the leader of the apostles, “You are Rock, and upon this rock I will build my Church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” Jesus actually changes Simon’s name to “Rock,” which is Peter in Greek and Latin. Simon becomes “the Rock” upon which Jesus will figuratively build his spiritual edifice, the Church.

When we speak of a rock, we can mean something small enough for a child to pick up and throw into a pond to watch the ripples form ever-widening circles. Or we can mean something as large as a cornerstone for a building, weighing a ton or more. Or we can mean a mountain, like the Rock of Gibraltar, or Ayers Rock in Australia, or Stone Mountain near Atlanta in Georgia. In the ancient world, cities and castles were built upon rock because it gave them a firm foundation and it made them more defensible, being higher than their enemies who might try to beseige them.

In the new Christian dispensation, Jesus himself is the cornerstone, the rock upon which the salvation of humankind is solidly based. So today, in the light of the gospel of our Mass, we can adore our divine Lord as rock, firmness, solidity, strength, reliability. As Saint Peter says so correctly, “Lord, to whom shall we go? YOU have the words of eternal life.” Thank you for seeking God’s truth. God bless you. Father Victor Brown, O.P.

Note:  Father Brown composed this message some years ago.                                        


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