First Reading:                   Jeremiah 31:7-9

Responsorial Psalm:          Psalm 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6 (3)

Second Reading:              Hebrews 5:1-6

Alleluia:                             cf. 2 Timothy 1:10

Gospel:                             Mark 10:46-52



My prayer from these readings is about relationships.  The basic relationship is with God.  All other relationships are measured by this standard.  In the readings, Jeremiah proclaims that God will gather his people with the blind and the lame in their midst.  The vary notion of having a relationship with God Almighty brings out the Antiphon, The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy.”  Hebrews explains that God makes priests representative of the people back to God.  Finally, Mark, is about the diligent Bartimaeus, not taking “no” for an answer, as he pleads his case for sight.  Jesus proclaims, “your faith has saved you.”  Human relationships with God tell the story imbedded in the readings today.

Faith in God can make that relationship relatively easy.  I would disagree with those who say that life is difficult and hard.  While there is some truth that there is some effort required to lead a Catholic Christian live, insight and acceptance of the loving touch of God makes that life, even in its final phases, one of peace with the Lord.

Women are part of my concern for others.  I cringe when Raymond Arroyo proclaims the evils of abortion within an all male context on television EWTN.[1]  The program was at the 127th Supreme Convention of the Knights of Columbus in Arizona.  When Arroyo proclaims, “It is not a choice, it is a child,” it sounds as if he means either that women are not adults, but are children; or that women are non-existent.  That is the old patriarchy gone mad.  The relationship between men and women in the Church, equal in their humanity before God, needs payer.

Mark A. Yarhouse and James Sellers, “Family Therapies:  A Comprehensive Christian Appraisal,”[2] offer help.  Chapter 5, “Psychodynamic Family Therapy,” boils down to listening.  When people do not want to confront their frustrations, they can push those frustrations into the unconscious level and then refuse to talk about them.  That is why listening is important.  That is why I am concerned that the administration of The Catholic University of America remains on the censured list of the American Association of University Professors—for not listening to its own faculty.

Despite the weaknesses in which the Faithful live, God listens and is merciful.  God is not only a last resort, but God is also a first beginning.  In developing relationships with others, the Faithful can also include developing relationship with God Almighty.  Developing these relationships takes constant effort, but deep in their souls the Faithful can rest easy knowing that God is not only love, but that God also bears love for humanity.  The prayer, then, is Praise God!



Annotated Bibliography

Material above the double line draws from material below the double line. Those uninterested in scholarly and tangential details should stop reading here. If they do, however, they may miss some interesting material.


Jeremiah 31:7-9

I am unable to verify that the Lectionary translates the Sinaiticus.  The problem may be my inability to handle the Sinaiticus vocabulary.


Psalm 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6 (3)

The Order of Christian Funerals utilizes this Psalm at 13, 16 Antiphons and Psalms for use in various places within the rites.  While verse 3 is the Responsorial for the Sundays, verse 6, modified as follows, is the Antiphon for the funeral rite. “Those who sow in tears shall sing for joy when they reap.”[3]


Codex Sinaiticus[4]

The Sinaiticus has this whole Psalm.


Hebrews 5:1-6

The eclectic Greek is difficult.  The Lectionary translation is must make sin offerings for himself as well as for the people. The eclectic Greek and the Sinaiticus both have for the people first.  I do not know what to make of the fact that the Twentieth Century translations have for the people second.


Lectionary (1998)                         for himself as well as for the people

The Vulgate (circa 410)                et pro populo, its etiam pro semetipso

Douay-Rheims (1582-1610)          as for the people, so also for himself

King James (1611)                       as for the people, so also for himself

Catholic RSV (1969)                    for his own sins as well as for those of the people

New American (NAB) (1970)         for himself as well as for the people

New Jerusalem (1985)                 for himself as well as for the people



Heb 5:2

Boyd Taylor Coolman, "Hugh of St. Victor on `Jesus Wept': Compassion as ideal Humanitas[5]

Human rights, in the person of the humanity of Jesus has a long history.  Hugh of St. Victor (1096-1141)[6] acts as a bridge between the patristic Fathers and the Twentieth Century. 

The précis explains,


Hugh is keen … not only to underscore Jesus’ human capacity for compassion but also to identify such fellow-feeling as the signature attribute of ideal human nature.  Accordingly, one finds throughout the Victorine’s corpus that, on this christological basis, Hugh advocates an ethic of compassion for human beings generally.


The above statement makes the connection between human rights and the humanity of Jesus.


Heb 5:6

Todd D. Still, "Christos as Pistos: The Faith(fulness) of Jesus in the Epistle to the Hebrews"[7]

Still argues that by mentioning Melchizedek, Hebrews “is more akin to Melchizedek than to his Aaronic priestly predecessors …”


cf. 2 Timothy 1:10

The Sinaiticus uses abbreviations for Savior and Christ Jesus.[8]  Without the eclectic Greek, I would not be sure.


Mark 10:46-52

Mark 10:50-51

Kurt Aland and Barbara Aland, The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism, 2nd ed., Erroll F. Rhodes, tr.[9]

The University of Chicago Oriental Institute has a Fifth Century manuscript with verses 50 and 51.


Mark 10:1-52

Michael Patella, O.S.B., review of Stephen P. Ahearne-Kroll, The Psalms of Lament Mark’s Passion: Jesus’ Davidic Suffering[10]

While verse 46 indicates that Jesus is leaving Jericho, it does not say that he is heading toward Jerusalem for his last agony.  Ahearne-Kroll finds a relationship between the Lamentations and Mark.  Patella judges that Ahearne-Kroll stretches his argument.


Mark 10:46-52

J. Edward Wright, review of Michael Patella, Lord of the Cosmos: Mithras, Paul, and the Gospel of Mark[11]

The focus is on the name of the blind man, Bartimaeus.  Timaeus, the name of his father, is also the name of a book by Plato.[12]  Patella argues that Mark was writing for those who knew Greek in Rome.  Wright is “not convinced that P. has fully addressed this issue” of how Jesus understood the structure of the cosmos.


Mark 10:46

Émile Puech, review of Jean-Marie Van Cangh and Alphonse Toumpsin, L'Evangile de Mark: Un original hébreu?[13]

Van Cangh and Toumpsin argue that Bartimaeus is an Aramaic, rather than a Hebrew, name, meaning that Jesus and his disciples spoke Aramaic, rather than Hebrew.  Puech judges that Van Cangh and Toumpsin do “not really advance all that much the understanding of the text or resolve the question of Semitisms in Mark …  ”.


Mark 10:46

John J. Pilch, review of Richard Bauckham, Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony[14]

Pilch thinks that Bauckham stretches the facts with the idea that those who wrote the Gospels personally witnessed all about which they wrote; or were even close to the eyewitness reports.  Pilch observes, “His argument … runs counter to almost all recent NT scholarship (p. 240).”


Mark 10:52

Leah L. Payne, review of John Christopher Thomas, The Spirit of the New Testament[15]

Thomas is a Pentecostal academic writing for both a general audience and academics.  The healing of Bartimaeus bears out “the close relationship in the Gospels between healing and salvation … and Paul’s foregrounding of healing as a demonstration in `word and deed’ (Rom 15:19) of the Spirit’s power.”  Payne is gentle as he points out the Pentecostal identity of Thomas.


Mark 10:52

Elizabeth Struthers Malbon, review of Brendan Byrne, S.J., A Costly Freedom: A Theological Reading of Mark’s Gospel[16]

Byrne makes the point that Mark 8:22-10:52 is the fourth of eight conventional divisions of the Gospel.  Malbon observes, “…  B. seems to move away from this focus on the demonic to the more traditional theological understanding of Jesus’ death as an atonement for sin, even though he realizes that this reading is somewhat problematic for Mark’s Gospel (p. 221).”



For more on sources see the Appendix file. Personal Notes are on the web site at



I mistakenly overlooked the following for reading for 146B.

Heb 4:14-16

George T. Montague, S.M., review of Antonio Portalatin, Temporal Oppositions as Hermeneutical Categories in the Epistle to the Hebrews[17]


[1] Raymond Arroyo, the Encore Presentation on ETWN, “The World Over,” Saturday, August 8, 2009.  I do not own the technology required to record this program, and accept the risk associated therewith.


[2] (2009 manuscript in press) 132-175.

[3] N.a., International Commission on English in the Liturgy: A Joint Commission of Catholic Bishops’ Conferences, The Roman Ritual: Revised by Decree of the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council and published by Authority of Pope Paul IV: Order of Christian Funerals: Including Appendix 2: Cremation: 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 (New Jersey: Catholic Book Publishing Co., 1998) 290.


[4]  (accessed August 4, 2009).  Psalm 126 in the Lectionary is Psalm 125 in the Sinaiticus.  Psalm 128 in the Lectionary is Psalm 127 in the Sinaiticus.


[5] Theological Studies, Vol. 69, No. 3(September 2008) 531.


[6]  (accessed August 9, 2009).


[7] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 69, No. 4 (October 2007) 750.


[9] Grand Rapids, Michigan, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1989.


[10] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 71, No. 3 (April 2009) 635.


[11] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 69, No. 3 (July 2007) 587.


[13] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 68, No. 3 (July 2006) 556.


[14] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 70, No. 1 (April 2008) 138.


[15] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 69, No. 4 (October 2007) 839.


[16] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 71, No. 3 (April 2009) 639.


[17] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 69, No. 3 (July 2007) 589.