Audio Readings November 9, 2014 The Dedication of the Lateran Basilica

Ezekiel 47:1-2, 8-9, 12; Psalm 46:2-3, 5-6, 8-9; 1 Corinthians 3:9-11, 16-17;John 2:13-22

Zeal for your house will consume me. (John 2:17)

Imagine a church adorned with marble columns, bursting with colors, gold ceilings, marble floors, walls covered with New Testament scenes, a mosaic of Mary and the saints, and a seven-meter high statue of Jesus Christ. This is the Lateran Basilica in Rome.

This building isn’t just visually stunning; it has a rich history as well. As the cathedral of the Diocese of Rome, it is considered the pope’s church in his capacity as bishop of Rome. The emperor Constantine donated the land for it to Pope Melchiades around a.d. 311, and had a church built there for him. Until the construction of St. Peter’s in the sixteenth century, the popes lived in a residence built on the site as well.

Over time, the Lateran Basilica has faced many hardships. It has been sacked, damaged by more than one fire, and nearly destroyed by an earthquake. But even in these challenges, this historic church, which is a symbol for bishops everywhere, can teach us. Like the Lateran, the universal Church is both stunningly beautiful and has faced many challenges. It has been persecuted, and some of its members and leaders have made mistakes that have inflicted grievous wounds on it. Many bishops have handled their responsibilities well; some have not.

None of this should surprise us. The Church is made up of imperfect people, and bishops are no exception. Like us, they face temptation, and so they need support. As our brothers in Christ, they need our prayers, our encouragement, and the witness of our lives.

Try something different today. Write a letter or e-mail to your bishop! Tell him you’re praying for him. Rather than asking something of him, just encourage him, and lift him up to the Lord.

“Thank you, Father, for those you have called to be bishops. Bless them and protect them. Together with them, we all pray, ‘Lead us not into temptation.’ ”~WAU



About gemdk

I am a cradle Catholic who made my first Holy Communion over 5o years ago at All Saints Catholic Church in Houston,TX in 1961. Went to Mass every Sunday as a child and teen and then young adult. Fell away for about 12 years in the late 80's, early 90's and then realized what was missing in my life was my Catholic upbringing and faith. Found my home at Sacred Heart in Crosby. Filling up the void I had for those 12 years in more ways than I can imagine, loving every minute of it. But this blog is not about me as much as it is for me and anyone who wants/needs to hear the word of God. I'm merely the instrument God uses to post the readings.
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