September 11, 2021
by Scott McClure
Creighton University's Former Assistant Director of the Magis Teacher Corp
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Saturday of the Twenty-third Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 442

1 Timothy 1:15-17
Psalm 113:1b-2, 3-4, 5 and 6-7
Luke 6:43-49

Praying Ordinary Time

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When my siblings and I were young, a popular consequence my mom would pass down for misbehavior was writing sentences. And she had a favorite:

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God.

Of course, I rarely received this consequence... but when I did, I never received an order of more than 100 sentences. However, my older siblings have told tales of more severe sentences (i.e., consequences, not sentences, though the pun is most certainly intended). Well, the message stuck and absorbing today's readings I hear this most familiar of beatitudes in them. In his First Letter to Timothy, Paul has but one message for us this day: God is merciful. Following this, Psalm 113 tells us that we should praise the name of the Lord. To cap off these scriptures, we hear Jesus say in the Gospel of Luke that every tree is known by its own fruit.

Begging pardon for my brevity in referencing today's scriptures, I intend this brevity to underscore what seems to me to be a single, unified message emanating from them: As God is merciful and as we are to give praise to God, so we should be merciful. And what is the fruit of this tree of mercy? Peace. 

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God.

Residing and writing in the United States, this day - September 11 - bears a special significance each year. Despite the arbitrariness of time, that today marks twenty years since September 11, 2001 makes me pause perhaps a bit longer. It was such a tragic day. I ask myself: is our world more peaceful twenty years later? Are we being peacemakers? Am I? If every tree is known by its own fruit, what fruit are we seeing in 2021? 

Make no mistake, we are all God's beloved children. This is our true identity. Now, let us show it. Let us live this identity - live mercy - so that people may say, There, see those children of God. We will be known by our fruit. 

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