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Sunday, July 20, 1997

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16th Sunday Ordinary Time

Jeremiah 23:1-6
Psalm 23
Ephesians 2:13-18
Mark 6:30-34

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heartbreak hotel

"Jesus saw a vast crowd. He had compassion on them." —Mark 6:34, our transl.

Some people ruined Jesus' vacation (see Mk 6:31). They wouldn't even let Him and His apostles rest a little and eat (Mk 6:31). If a crowd of people made life that difficult for us, we might resent it or be upset. However, Jesus felt compassion for the crowd and "began to teach them at great length" (Mk 6:34).

Do you have the heart of Jesus for people who demand a lot from you, inconvenience you, or even hurt you? Are you willing to lay down your life to feed the sheep? (see Jn 21:17) Jesus is looking for people after His own heart (Acts 13:22), people with a shepherd's heart (see Jer 3:15).

Jesus gave us a new heart (Ez 36:26) when we were baptized into Him (see Rm 6:3). However, for that heart to beat with Christ's love even for the most unlovable, we must daily surrender every detail of our lives to Him. Jesus invites us: "Take My yoke upon your shoulders and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble of heart" (Mt 11:29). Are you willing to learn to love with the heart of Jesus? Are you willing to have your heart broken open for love?

Prayer:  Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place my trust in You.

Promise:  "I Myself will gather the remnant of My flock from all the lands to which I have driven them and bring them back to their meadow; there they shall increase and multiply." —Jer 23:3

Praise:  Alleluia! Jesus is risen! He has conquered sin and death. Alleluia!

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, November 12, 1996

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 10, 1996