Faith is a form of knowledge. Faith is readily
recognized as essential for worshipping God. Faith is not so readily recognized
as essential for any form of education, from something as fundamental as
American Red Cross water rescue and life saving to something as esoteric as
The Lectionary readings for today are about
Faith as a form of knowledge. The readings are sometimes misinterpreted as
excluding the need for good works, so long as Faith is present. In reality,
good (in the sense of Godly) works, emanate from Faith.
One of those good works in the
The Faithful can learn from the Black Catholic experience how to learn about God through education, even so-called secular education. Statistics from the 1990 City University of New York’s national survey of religious identification show that Black Catholics are as educated as White Catholics and more educated than national averages. All education is about creation and all creation tells the Faithful something about their Creator.
Hosea 6:6 is blunt and specific, to paraphrase a
little, “It is knowledge of God,
rather than holocausts, that I desire.”
Psalm 50:1 points out that God has creating everything “from the rising of the sun to its setting.” Malachi draws on Psalm 50:1-2 to mean to worship God all day long, in a cultic fashion. The purpose was to renew the Covenant. The Lectionary omits verses 10 and 11 that specify some animals God created. Psalm 50:14 shows the Faithful how to react to knowledge about God gained through knowledge of creation: “Offer to God praise as your sacrifice.”
The Responsorial antiphon urges the Faithful to accept what God shows with the proclamation, “To the upright I will show the saving power of God.” God, in Psalm 50:15 invites those suffering to “then call upon me in time of distress; I will rescue you, and you shall glorify me.’” Black Catholics follow this path.
The Epistle of Paul to the Romans is written to
in other words, to the Faithful of today.
Sexual morality is an important component of religious
Biblical time is pertinent to social development. An
attitude exists today that everyone is entitled to human rights both here and
now. Biblical time, away from the now
is imaginary, under the purview of God. That is what Romans means where
In Romans 4:21,
Romans 4:25, “who was handed over for our
transgressions and was raised for our justification,” parallels the Good Friday
readings from Isaiah 53:12, “he surrendered himself to death and he shall…win
pardon for their offenses.”
This is something like what the Josephites do when they accept racial prejudice
as part of their lot in expiation for sin. The point is that God is doing this
The Alleluia verse, based on Luke 4:18, uses the logic
of theology to point out what God does for the captive poor, namely liberty and
glad tidings. The effort to learn is worth the grace that follows, with all
things falling into place for the glory of God. The Gospel for today is from
In the Gospel today,
The Venerable Bede applies Matthew 9:12, about the
need for a physician, to Tobit and
Today the Lectionary calls for knowledge, in
Hosea, God desires the “knowledge of God” (Hosea 6:6). In Psalm 50:1, “God the
LORD has spoken,” which expects the Faithful to gain knowledge there. The Faith
of Abraham in Romans 4:18 is knowledge based on the Word of God. In the Gospel,
For more on sources see the Appendix file.
 Jack Dean Kingsbury, “The Developing Conflict between Jesus and the Jewish Leaders in Matthew’s Gospel: a Literary-Critical Study," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 49, No. 1 (January 1987) 61, 68.
 Mark Allan Powell, “Matthew’s Beatitudes: Reversals and Rewards of the Kingdom,” the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 58, No 3 (July 1996) 470.
Sue Gillingham, “From Liturgy to Prophecy: The Use of Psalmody in Second
 National Conference of Catholic Bishops, The Roman Missal Restored by Decree of the Second Ecumenical Council of the Vatican and Promulgated by Authority of Pope Paul VI: Lectionary for Mass: For Use in the Dioceses of the United States of America: Second Typical Edition: Volume I: Sundays, Solemnities, Feasts of the Lord and Saints (Collegeville, Minnesota: The Liturgical Press, 1998).530.
 Jeremy Corley, “The Pauline Authorship of 1 Corinthians 13," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 66, No. 2 (April 2004) 263.
 Joseph Plevnik, S.J., The Understanding of God at the Basis of Pauline Theology," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 65, No. 4 (October 2003) 561, 566-567.
 W. R. G. Loader, “Son of David, Blindness, Possession, and Duality in Matthew,” the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 44, No. 4 (October 1982) 571.
 Jack Dean Kingsbury, “Observations on the `Miracle Chapters’ of Mathew 8-9," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 40, No. 4 (October 1978) 565.