Today in the Church is the feast of St.Casmir.
He was a man after the heart of God, who in such a short amount of time, 26 years, reached the state of perfection in his service to God and his fellow man.
His body remain incorrupt even today. And he was known for his daily devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary in his singing of the Hymn Omni Dei Dic Maria: Daily Daily Sing Mary.
"Daily, daily sing to Mary,
Sing, my soul, her praises due.
All her feasts, her actions worship
With the heart's devotion true.
Lost in wond'ring contemplation,
Be her Majesty confess'd.
Call her Mother, call her Virgin,
Happy Mother, Virgin blest.
She is mighty to deliver.
Call her, trust her lovingly.
When the tempest rages round thee,
She will calm the troubled sea.
Gifts of heaven she has given,
Noble Lady, to our race.
She, the Queen, who decks her subjects
With the light of God's own grace.
Sing, my tongue, the Virgin's trophies
Who for us her Maker bore.
For the curse of old inflicted,
Peace and blessing to restore.
Sing in songs of peace unending,
Sing the world's majestic Queen.
Weary not nor faint in telling.
All the gifts she gives to men."
A short version of the latin Hymn is above in English.
Now for Today's gospel.
The gospel begins with an interesting scene. Jesus enters Jerusalem and went into the Temple area. He looked around at everything and, since it was already late, went out to Bethany with the Twelve."
Of course this scene is setting up the cleansing of the temple area and chasing out the money changers. Jesus overturns the tables and does not permit anyone to carry anything through the temple and he gives his teaching on the temple being a house of prayer.
So why does JEsus scope out the temple the night before. It is almost like a trial run. Was he planning ahead? Did he have bad timing? Was he just late and realized the temple was locked and everyone had gone home?
I am not sure. I just find it fascinating that Jesus looks around at everything then leaves quietly.
What of the cursing of the fig tree? The tree did not have fruit and Jesus was hungry. Could he not have easily made the tree produce fruit on the spot. But rather he curses it and it dries up.
Then Jesus chases out the money changers and over turns the tables in the temple.
SO is Jesus just having one of those days! Is he just cranky! Or is there something more.
I can relate to this Jesus. I like to think he is just cranky and has one of those days and is having one of those moods.
But that is too easy.
All of these things are teaching moments for the disciples. It all moves toward the climax found in the words of JEsus toward the end of the gospel, "I tell you, all that you ask for in prayer, believe that you will receive it and it shall be yours. When you stand to pray forgive anyone whom you have a grievance, so that your heavenly Father may in turn forgive you your transgressions."
Obviously Jesus chases out the money changers and turns over the tables with forgiveness in his heart for those who transgress the Father. Forgiveness doesn't imply permission or license to do whatever. Even forgiveness makes demands for change.
Secondly, Jesus demonstrates the authentic reality of faith as witnesses in the fig tree. Faith makes things happen. It isn't just waiting for change it is bringing change about in concretely ways.
Thirdly, why the visit to the Temple the night before.
Planning ahead is not a bad idea. I suspect even Jesus liked to stay one step ahead just in case. Perhaps he was checking where the exits were. Perhaps he was seeing the layout of the temple. Perhaps he just wanted to prepare himself for the burst that would follow the next day.
Either way, it is worth meditating on the gospel. See how you answer the questions.