15 Jul 2017

16th July 2017 - A Discernment journey: An Interview with Mark O'Brien

On this weeks programme John is joined by Mark O'Brien to discuss the joys and challenges of discerning a path in life. We have our regular look at the saints of the week and also a short reflection on this weeks Sunday gospel.

You can listen to the podcast of this weeks full programme HERE.

Discerning our journey's in life - Interview with Mark O'Brien

Discernment is a theme or word which has been a leit motif of Pope Francis' teaching and ministry since his election as Pope. As a son of Ignatius of Loyola it is something which he has encouraged all Christians to practise. Back in August 2013 he said 
"Discernment is one of the things that worked inside St. Ignatius. For him it is an instrument of struggle in order to know the Lord and follow him more closely. [...] This discernment takes time. For example, many think that changes and reforms can take place in a short time. I believe that we always need time to lay the foundations for real, effective change. […] Sometimes discernment instead urges us to do precisely what you had at first thought you would do later. And that is what has happened to me in recent months. Discernment is always done in the presence of the Lord, looking at the signs, listening to the things that happen, the feeling of the people, especially the poor. […]The mystical dimension of discernment never defines its edges and does not complete the thought. The Jesuit must be a person whose thought is incomplete, in the sense of open-ended thinking."
Henri Nouwen the Dutch writer once said that “Discernment is faithful living and listening to God’s love and direction so that we can fulfill our individual calling and shared mission.”.

On this weeks programme John discusses a journey in faith with Mark O'Brien. Mark is one of Limerick diocese's seminarians who is currently discerning through the process of formation and education in seminary whether he is called to priesthood. 

While SS102fm has interviewed numerous priests about their vocation story to ordination, seminarians are still on that journey, seeking, discerning the path that the Lord is calling them to. Mark's interview bravely shares his on going journey to date and we hope that in the fullness of time he will be ordained to priesthood.

It is a sign and challenge of courage to us all to ask what are we doing to discern and respond to God's call to each of us in our daily lives.

You can listen to the interview with Mark excerpted from the main programme HERE.

Gospel - Mathew 13:1-23

On that day, Jesus went out of the house and sat down by the sea.
Such large crowds gathered around him
that he got into a boat and sat down,
and the whole crowd stood along the shore. 
And he spoke to them at length in parables, saying:
"A sower went out to sow. 
And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path,
and birds came and ate it up. 
Some fell on rocky ground, where it had little soil. 
It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep,
and when the sun rose it was scorched,
and it withered for lack of roots. 
Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it. 
But some seed fell on rich soil, and produced fruit,
a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold. 
Whoever has ears ought to hear."

The disciples approached him and said,
"Why do you speak to them in parables?" 
He said to them in reply,
"Because knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven
has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted. 
To anyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich;
from anyone who has not, even what he has will be taken away. 
This is why I speak to them in parables, because
they look but do not see and hear but do not listen or understand. 
Isaiah's prophecy is fulfilled in them, which says:
You shall indeed hear but not understand,
you shall indeed look but never see.
Gross is the heart of this people,
they will hardly hear with their ears,
they have closed their eyes,
lest they see with their eyes
and hear with their ears
and understand with their hearts and be converted,
and I heal them. 

"But blessed are your eyes, because they see,
and your ears, because they hear. 
Amen, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people
longed to see what you see but did not see it,
and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.

"Hear then the parable of the sower.
The seed sown on the path is the one
who hears the word of the kingdom without understanding it,
and the evil one comes and steals away
what was sown in his heart.
The seed sown on rocky ground
is the one who hears the word and receives it at once with joy. 
But he has no root and lasts only for a time. 
When some tribulation or persecution comes because of the word,
he immediately falls away. 
The seed sown among thorns is the one who hears the word,
but then worldly anxiety and the lure of riches choke the word
and it bears no fruit. 
But the seed sown on rich soil
is the one who hears the word and understands it,

who indeed bears fruit and yields a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold."

Reflections on this weeks gospel

Word on Fire
Sunday Reflections
Centre for Liturgy
English Dominicans
It’s About God, Not The Dirt 

Liturgical odds & ends

Liturgy of the Hours - Psalter week 3; 15th week in Ordinary time

Saints of the Week

17th July - St Hedwig of Poland
18th July - Bl Jean Baptiste de Bruxelle
19th July - St Macrina the Younger
20th July - St Apollinarius
21st July - St Lawrence of Brindisi
22nd July - St Mary Magdalene

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