Catholic Contemplative Affiliation

Sunday Readings


The Meditation


Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle A, February 23, 2020
Readings: Leviticus 19:1-2, 17-18; 1st Corinthians 3:16-23; Matthew 5:38-48
“God Loves You as You Are”—True or False
You, therefore, must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect (Gospel Reading).
The First Reading:
The Lord said to Moses: “Speak to the whole Israelite community and tell them: Be holy, for I, the Lord your God, am holy.”

Recently I heard someone quote a sermon in which the preacher said that God loves you just as you are.
I felt that that statement was not completely true.  God loves us as we are so that we can become something else.  God wants us to be perfect.  And God can only love us perfectly when we are perfect.
The Second Reading:

Let no one deceive himself… .  For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in the eyes of God.

What is being perfect in God’s eyes?  It is to be risen in Christ for existence in eternity.  God can love us only when we are completely, radically transformed into the image and likeness of His divine Son, the eternal Word, the only-begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. This takes place at the general resurrection of the just when Jesus comes finally to judge “the living and the dead.”
Never As We Are: Always the Divine Transformation
The deepest moment of contemplative prayer is to rest in, to surrender to, and to hold in simple consciousness, our being even now in our state of grace, being adopted into the divine life, being transformed daily into Christ, from grace unto grace, until we attain perfection in the eternal Kingdom. 
That is the meaning of the doctrine of purgatory: that we must be made perfect in the final trial of transformation so we can enter into full union with God in glory.  The journey begins in this life; and it continues in the next until we are perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect.
The Gospel Reading: Love of Enemies
The evidence of this transformation is the ability to love others, especially, those who are our enemies.
But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for he makes this sun rise on the evil and on the good and sends rain on the just and on the unjust (Gospel).
The First Reading:

You shall not bear hatred for your brother or sister in your heart.

God’s love holds us in all of our imperfections, but does not stop there in His Divine Plan; He is working in us to bring us to perfection.  Our deepest prayer is our consenting to this work in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.


William Fredrickson, Obl. Secular OSB; D.Min.


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William Frederickson