Monday, May 16, 2016

Back to Ordinary Time

When we study the Bible we tend to group books into categories, the gospels, the Pauline Letters, the Pastoral Letters, etc. But the group whose title may confuse some are the 7 letters in the New Testament referred to as the catholic letters.  The Catholic Leters are the three of St. John, the two of St. Peter, the Letter of St. James, and the Letter of St. Jude. The title "Catholic letters" can be traced back as far the earliest centuries of the Church. 

They are called Catholic because unlike Paul's letters that were each addressed to a specific church to deal with specific problems, the Catholic Letters are addressed to the whole Church. They are truly universal. 

Two the Church returns to Ordinary Time and we pick up at the Seventh Week, and the first reading picks up in the middle of chapter 3 of the Letter of James, it would be valuable to take a few moments today and read chapters 1 and 2. James is direct, dealing head on with temptation, doubt, faith, and what he calls the double-minded, or double-spirited person. This is the person who wants to be Christian but not really let go of their attachment to the world. From time to time it is any of us.