The Gospel reading from the Mass for Friday of the 28th Week of Ordinary Time is Luke 12:1-7.

Following His devastating critique and the announcement of the curses coming to the unrepentant Pharisees and scribes, massive crowds follow Christ, longing to hear and be healed by Him; many thousands of people are so frenzied and numerous that “they trod upon one another.”

Christ sums up the controlling weakness of the Pharisees as their hypocrisy. The word “hypocrite” has Greek roots which mean to be a “stage actor” or “pretender”; the Pharisees and scribes pretended to be holy but were not. Christ (God) has intimate knowledge of every man and sees through the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and scribes. He warns that the Pharisees’ hypocrisy permeates (like leaven spreads throughout dough) all their teachings and corrupts all their followers.

Christ urges His disciples to not cower in the darkness because the Pharisees can only kill the body. Instead, Christ warns that God should be feared; He is all powerful, all knowing and can condemn the soul in eternity to Hell. The disciples should be courageous for Christ reveals that light of the Gospel will be proclaimed everywhere. He promises that God, who has dominion over Heaven and Hell, knows everything (the hairs on a man’s head) and will remember and protect the disciples when they are zealous and unafraid in proclaiming Gospel. Christ promises that men are of great value and that God will take care of them.

Awed by Jesus Christ – Son of God, Christ describes His Father based on first hand Divine knowledge, reiterates the reality of Hell and the truth about the Judgment. Perfection of Virtue, Christ exhorts the disciples to be courageous. Divine Judge, Christ warns that He acknowledges men who acknowledge Him and deny men who deny Him. Divine King, Christ exhorts men to be fearless in battle and promises to protect them.

Being a Heroic Catholic Man

1) Spurred on by pervasive media, men flock to sporting, entertainment and politics events. Marvel at the Divine Charisma of Christ which spurs word-of-mouth excitement and draws thousands upon thousands to undertake arduous travel and tough conditions to see Him.

2) Reflect on the truth that the God has intimate knowledge and love for you personally. Renew your understanding of having Personal Relationship with God (CCC 35, 37, 299, 2558) and pray for Christ to help you draw closer to Him as your King and Savior.

3) Many Catholic men fail to condemn sin because they fear being labeled a “hater” (or misogynist, homophobic, Islamaphobic, racist) but have lost the healthy fear of God; Christ explicitly says, “fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I tell you, fear Him!” Renew your understanding the essential need for Holy Fear (CCC 1041, 1303, 1831, 1845) and pray for Christ to help you have holy fear and trust in His mercy.

Spiritual Practices – Include in Today’s Prayers

Sacred Mystery of Rosary – The Sorrowful Mysteries

Daily Devotion – The Passion and Death of our Lord Jesus Christ

Virtue of the Day – Faith

Corporal Work of Mercy – To visit the sick

Spiritual Work of Mercy – To forgive all injuries