Scripture Notes – Sunday 23rd August 2020

Dear friends, 
A very warm welcome to Biblical Resources. Before starting on the biblical texts, I draw your attention to two things.

1. Biblical Resources: a survey of the diocese
Last week, an imperfect form of the survey went out to all diocesan recipients of these notes. It has since been corrected and send to Communications. My colleagues in Communications Weill forwards it to all of you in the course of the week. It would be a very great help if you were to take the time to respond. All in all, it should take about 3 or 4 minutes to complete, with room for comment at the end. It is always possible to send further comment etc to Your help is much appreciated. When it is all done, I’ll send the full survey results to everyone.

2. Wexford Cycle: GOOD NEWS!
Each year, I do a charity cycle for the homeless (Peter McVerry’s Welcome Home). If you’d like to contribute, click on this link here. The cycle is scheduled for Saturday, 12th September. The cycle has been cancelled except for 31 selected cyclists to mark the 31st year of the cycle. Your correspondent is among them (and is thrilled to be included). Thanks to all who have already contributed. The goal is €10k.

Jesus approaches Caesarea Philippi
This rich Gospel story can invite us in different directions. The primary level is indicated by the direct question: But you, who do you say I am? This question is never out of date and always timely. In our day, such reflection cannot ignore the contemporary perspectives of cosmology, evolution and ecology. For an invigorating exploration, I recommend below Dermot Lane’s new book.

At another level, the Gospel does invite reflection on the “Petrine ministry” in the church today. The history of the Roman see is, like all history, marked with ambiguity and sin.  Of the three synoptic evangelists, Matthew is sharply aware of the frail humanity of Peter and nevertheless there is a ministry of oversight.  Matthew, read in his own historical context, invites us to a critical re-reading of this ministry for today’s church. It can be bracing! The YouTube video may help here.

3.  Sunday 23 August (21A20)
Full notes (PDF)
Gospel notes only (audio)
Gospel notes only (portable)
Note: the audio no longer takes you SoundCloud but plays instead directly from the website.

Short presentations (about 30 minutes), going a little deeper into the Gospel passage.
Gospel exploration (YouTube)
Gospel exploration (Zoom)

4. Online Gospel explorations (complete list)
YouTube lectures

5. Emerging understandings of Christ

Dermot Lane’s new book, Theology and Ecology in Dialogue, invites us to a new narrative joining creation and incarnation much more closely together. The book offers a thrilling vision of how we need to re-vision our understanding of the Christian tradition in dialogue with contemporary cosmological narratives. Here’s a sample text:

“God implants, ask it were, a dynamic orientation within creation through the gift of Word, Spirit and Wisdom. This orientation issues in the Incarnation of God in Jesus, and the light of the Incarnation continues in the world towards its final consummation in Christ at the end of time. There are a number of advantages to this unified view of creation, Incarnation and consummation. The gift of self-transcendence, built into the orientation of matter in creation, and the dynamic of humanity provides a Christology that can engage with the science of evolution. This Christology is not an interventionist Christology but rather an unfolding Christology that resonates with the evolution of the cosmos as described by science.” (p. 88).

Every blessing,

Kieran O’Mahony OSA

Dr Kieran J. O’Mahony OSA
Biblical Studies Coordinator