Tuesday, June 2, 2015

"Whose image is this?" Mark 12:13-17.

Book of Tobit 2:9-14. 
On the night of Pentecost, after I had buried the dead, I, Tobit, went into my courtyard  to sleep next to the courtyard wall.  My face was uncovered because of the heat.
I did not know there were birds perched on the wall above me, till their warm droppings settled in my eyes, causing cataracts. I went to see some doctors for a cure, but the more they anointed my eyes with various salves, the worse the cataracts became, until I could see no more. For four years I was deprived of eyesight, and all my kinsmen were grieved at my condition. Ahiqar, however, took care of me for two years, until he left for Elymais.
At that time my wife Anna worked for hire at weaving cloth, the kind of work women do.
When she sent back the goods to their owners, they would pay her. Late in winter she finished the cloth and sent it back to the owners. They paid her the full salary, and also gave her a young goat for the table.
On entering my house the goat began to bleat. I called to my wife and said: "Where did this goat come from? Perhaps it was stolen! Give it back to its owners; we have no right to eat stolen food!"
But she said to me, "It was given to me as a bonus over and above my wages." Yet I would not believe her, and told her to give it back to its owners. I became very angry with her over this. So she retorted: "Where are your charitable deeds now? Where are your virtuous acts? See! Your true character is finally showing itself!"

Psalms 112(111):1-2.7bc-8.9. 

Blessed the man who fears the LORD,
who greatly delights in his commands.
His posterity shall be mighty upon the earth;
the upright generation shall be blessed.

An evil report he shall not fear;
his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD.
His heart is steadfast; he shall not fear
till he looks down upon his foes.

Lavishly he gives to the poor,
his generosity shall endure forever;
his horn shall be exalted in glory.

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Mark 12:13-17. 
Some Pharisees and Herodians were sent to Jesus to ensnare him in his speech.
They came and said to him, "Teacher, we know that you are a truthful man and that you are not concerned with anyone's opinion. You do not regard a person's status but teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. Is it lawful to pay the census tax to Caesar or not? Should we pay or should we not pay?"
Knowing their hypocrisy he said to them, "Why are you testing me? Bring me a denarius to look at."
They brought one to him and he said to them, "Whose image and inscription is this?" They replied to him, "Caesar's."
So Jesus said to them, "Repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God." They were utterly amazed at him.

"Whose image is this?"
Saint Teresa of Avila (1515-1582)

Soul, you must seek yourself in me
And in yourself must seek for me.

Such is the power of love's impress, 
O soul, to engrave you on my heart, 
That any craftsman must confess 
He never could have the same success, 
However superlative his art.

It was by love that you were made 
Lovely and beautiful to be; 
So, if by chance you should have strayed, 
Upon my heart you are portrayed. 
Soul, you must seek yourself in me.

For well I know that you will see 
Yourself engraved upon my breast— 
An image vividly impressed— 
And then you will rejoice to be 
So safely lodged, so highly blest.

And if by chance you do not know
Where to go in quest of me, 
Do not go far my face to see, 
Searching everywhere high and low, 
But in yourself must seek for me.

For, soul, in you I am confined,
You are my dwelling and my home;
And if one day I chance to find
Fast-closed the portals of your mind
I ask for entrance when I come.

Oh, do not seek me far away,
For, if you would attain to me,
You only need my name to say
And I’ll be there without delay.
Look in yourself to seek for me.

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