What will separate us from the love of God? (Rom 8:35) My concern is with what stress can do to the heart, mind, and soul. To begin, Isaiah and his followers demonstrated how to deal with stress.
Isaiah 55:1-3 begins with a happy note, proclaiming
that things will get better. Through
trials and tribulations, Isaiah sees the love of God coming through. The ultimate vision for Isaiah is
Isaiah 55:3, I
will renew with you the everlasting covenant, the benefits assured to
Psalm 145 is alphabetical acrostic,
in other words based on thought, rather than feeling. Pastoral Care of the Sick uses Psalm
Psalm 145:17 is especially dear to those
in the intellectual apostolate. The LORD is near … to all who call upon him
in truth. In the Latin,
Romans 8:35, 37-39, delivers the highly rhetorical
message of union with the love of God. This
is some of the most upbeat writing in
Romans 8:37-39 is fundamental to
At the time of his public ministry,
Marxist scholars look at class conflict. Class conflict is real, though not necessarily all embracing. Non-Marxist scholars are able to present the Land of the Free still conflicted with the residuals of slavery. Such conflict causes stress, stress that the God sooths with his love. Along these lines, Saint Augustine (354-430), Bishop of Hippo in Africa, writes that “the government of the world is a greater miracle than feeding five thousand men from five loaves; yet at the former no one wonders, the latter astonishes all men…the Lord is …not now…lightly to be passed over.” The stress of governance is greater than the stress of providing bread to eat.
The Gospel parallel to Matthew 14:13-21 is in John 6:1-15 that points out that the loaves were made of barley. I wonder about the relationship between this barley and the wheat required for licit Eucharistic bread. The Fathers of the Church find various symbolisms in the barley. Saint Bede observes that barley “is the nourishment of beasts of burden, and the food of slaves; and the Old Law was given to slaves and to beasts of burden”
The Fathers of the Church do enjoy playing with
numbers. According to
These readings are about keeping the Faith during times of stress, the stress of exile from places the Faithful love as expressed in Isaiah 55:1-3; the stress associated with finding the truth required to call upon God in Psalm 145:17; the whole litany of stresses found in Romans 8:35, 38-39; and the stress associated when authorities execute one’s cousin (John the Baptizer) for doing the same thing you (Jesus) are doing.
Personal Notes are on the web site at www.western-civilization.com/CBQ/Personal%20Notes For more on sources see the Appendix file.
 Richard J. Clifford, S.J., “The Unity of the Book of Isaiah and Its Cosmogonic Language," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 55, No. 1 (January 1993 ) 5.
 Richard J. Clifford, S.J., “The Unity of the Book of Isaiah and Its Cosmogonic Language," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 55, No. 1 (January 1993 ) 15 .
 Hanan Eshel and John Strugnell, “Alphabetical Acrostics in Pre-Tannaitic Hebrew," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 62, No. 3 (July 2000) 444.
 The Roman Ritual: Revised by Decree of the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council and Published by Authority of Pope Paul VI: Pastoral Care of the Sick: Rites of Anointing and Viaticum: Approved for use in the dioceses of the United States of America by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops and Confirmed by the Apostolic See: Prepared by International Commission on English in the Liturgy: a Joint Commission of Catholic Bishops’ Conferences (New York: Catholic Book Publishing Co. 1983) 328.
 Jeremy Corley, “The Pauline Authorship of 1 Corinthians 13," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 66, No. 2 (April 2004) 258.
 Joseph Plevnik, S.J., “The Understanding of God at the Basis of Pauline Theology," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 65, No. 4 (October 2003) 562, 566.
 Brendan Byrne, S.J., “The Problem of NomoV and the Relationship with Judaism in Romans,” the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 62, No. 2 (April 2000) 308.
 W. R. G. Loader, “Son of David, Blindness, Possession, and Duality in Matthew,” the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 44, No. 4 (October 1982) 583.
 Jack Dean Kingsbury, “Observations on the `Miracle Chapters’ of Mathew 8-9," the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 40, No. 4 (October 1978) 565.
Theophylactus, “Exposition from the Catena Aurea,” The Sunday Sermons of the Great Fathers: Volume Two: From the First
Sunday in Lent to the Sunday after the Ascension, tr. and ed.
 Mark Allan Powell, “The Magi as Kings: An Adventure in Reader-Response Criticism,” the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 62, No. 3 (July 2000) 469.
IV. St. Augustine, Bishop and Doctor, “Exposition of the Gospel,” PL 35, Tr.
24, “Exposition from the Catena Aurea,” The
Sunday Sermons of the Great Fathers: Volume Two: From the First Sunday in Lent
to the Sunday after the Ascension, tr. and ed.