sabato 16 giugno 2018

«Vobis datum est mysterium regni Dei»

Mark is the shortest of the gospels. Among the four gospels, Mark is perhaps the one that reports fewer words of Jesus: there are no long discourses in it. We also find just few parables: I have counted only six in the whole gospel; five of them in chapter four. Today’s liturgy presents two of these. Both of them are very short comparisons: their shortness emphasizes their enigmatic character. Mark, at the end of today’s passage, informs us that “with many such parables [Jesus] spoke the word to them as they were able to understand it. Without parables he did not speak to them, but to his own disciples he explained everything in private.” This note of the evangelist is interesting, because, on one hand, it seems that Jesus tells parables to make himself understood by people; but, on the other hand, it seems that there are two different kinds of teaching, one more obscure for the crowds, and one plainer, reserved for the disciples. 

sabato 9 giugno 2018

«Reus aeterni delicti»

Jesus’ ministry was very successful: if you remember, when he began to preach in the synagogue of Capernaum, the people were astonished, for he taught as one having authority and not as the scribes. Moreover, he did not limit himself to speaking, but he also drove out demons and healed the sick. So, people flocked to him from everywhere. Today’s gospel tells us that, while he was at home with his disciples, “the crowd gathered, making it impossible for them even to eat.” 

venerdì 8 giugno 2018


Siccome sono stato sollecitato da piú parti a esprimermi sulla notizia, riportata ieri dalla Nuova Bussola Quotidiana, di un incontro col climatologo Michael Mann, che sarebbe stato organizzato dalla Diocesi di Torino e dai Padri Barnabiti, mi sembra opportuno fare alcune precisazioni.

sabato 2 giugno 2018

«Sabbatum propter hominem ... non homo propter sabbatum»

We resume on this Sunday—the ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time—the reading of the gospel of Mark we had suspended on February before the beginning of Lent. The last passage we read was the healing of a leper. Jesus had just started his public ministry in Galilee, announcing the coming of the kingdom of God and inviting people to repentance. He had called his first disciples and performed his first miracles. But a conflict with the Pharisees had also broken out. In today’s gospel we see a couple of controversies about the sabbath.

giovedì 31 maggio 2018

Pretiosissimus Sanguis

We continue calling this solemnity Corpus Christi, as it was in the ancient liturgy. But at that time, besides today’s celebration, there was, on July 1, the feast of the Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ. With the liturgical reform, this latter celebration was abolished and the title of Corpus Christi was changed to “the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ,” since the Eucharist is precisely the sacrament of the Body and Blood of Christ.

sabato 26 maggio 2018

«Una divinitas, aequalis gloria, coaeterna maiestas»

St. Patrick used the shamrock as a metaphor for the Holy Trinity

The Fathers of the Church used to distinguish between theology and economy: with the first term they referred to the mystery of God; with the second, to the works of God, that is, the history of salvation. Up to now, during the liturgical year, we have had to do with economy: at Christmas we celebrated the mystery of the incarnation of the Son of God, his birth and his manifestation; at Easter we celebrated the mystery of his passion, death, burial and resurrection. We completed the celebration of the paschal mystery these last weeks with the Lord’s ascension and the descent of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost. On this Sunday after Pentecost, the Church wants us to shift our attention from economy to theology: after considering the works of God, we are invited to fix our eyes on God himself, on his mystery, which was revealed through those works. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says, “Through economy, theology is revealed to us; but conversely, theology illuminates the whole economy. God’s works reveal who he is in himself; the mystery of his inmost being enlightens our understanding of all his works. So it is, analogously, among human persons. A person discloses himself in his actions, and the better we know a person, the better we understand his actions” (n. 236).

sabato 19 maggio 2018

«Linguarum diversitatem in unius fidei confessione sociavit»

Seven weeks, that is to say, fifty days have passed since Easter. On this day, the Jews celebrated the “feast of the harvest” or “feast of weeks,” by which they thanked God for the harvest and offered the firstfruits to him. On this day, they also commemorated the giving of the commandments on mount Sinai, which happened more or less a couple of months after the departure of the Israelites from Egypt. On this day, the apostles, who, after the ascension of Jesus, were waiting for the fulfillment of his promise, received the Holy Spirit.