The Heart’s Temple

November 19, 2021
Friday of the Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time

Today, in God’s Lavish Mercy, we pray with a passage from Chronicles as our Responsorial Psalm:

Yours, O LORD, are grandeur and power,
    majesty, splendor, and glory.
For all in heaven and on earth is yours.

1 Chronicles 29:11

This passage inclines us to worship God whose “temple” is all of Creation.


Both readings today speak about the “Temple”. After the victory of Judas Maccabeus, the Jewish people restore their physical Temple with exuberant celebration, recognizing it as a symbol of God’s Presence with them.


In today’s Gospel. Jesus also “restores” the Temple by driving out the merchants who have diverted the Temple’s purpose as representative of God’s Presence.


Our bodies too are temples of the Holy Spirit. Paul, in his letter to the Corinthians tells us:

Do you not know
that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit,
who is in you, whom you have received from God?
You are not your own; you were bought at a price.

1 Corinthians 6:19

Through our Baptism into the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Christ, the Holy Spirit dwells in us. We are called to be transformed by this Indwelling. As in any relationship, this transformation is accomplished through transparency, communication, listening and acting on behalf of the Beloved.


Poetry: Go Not to the Temple – Tagore

Go not to the temple to put flowers upon the feet of God,
First fill your own house with the Fragrance of love…

Go not to the temple to light candles before the altar of God,
First remove the darkness of sin from your heart…

Go not to the temple to bow down your head in prayer,
First learn to bow in humility before your fellowmen…

Go not to the temple to pray on bended knees,
First bend down to lift someone who is down-trodden. ..

Go not to the temple to ask for forgiveness for your sins,
First forgive from your heart those who have sinned against you.


Music: In the Temple Garden – Aaron Kenny

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