Scripture Readings: Ezekiel 34:11-12, 15-17; 1 Corinthians 15: 20-26, 28; Matthew 25: 31-46
The gospel message is often a two edged sword.
At times the Gospel gives us hope, offers us comfort, gives us peace, is the answer to our prayers, or reinforces our acts of charity. At other times the Gospel is challenging – reminding us of the need to live our love of God, our love for others, our being Christ’s disciple a bit more authentically.
For sure there are days (maybe more than we would like to admit) when we do not want to be reminded of what it means to be authentic disciples of Jesus.
At times it seems so difficult, maybe even impossible.
Yet, today Jesus seems to make it very simple. Jesus talks about: food, clothes, water, shelter. The basics of life.
Today’s Gospel is more than an instruction, it is an invitation. An invitation to join Jesus in his care for “the least, the lost and the last.”
There’s a rather famous picture entitled, “The Christ of the Breadlines,” that depicts Jesus as a central figure in a dark, depression-era line of homeless and hungry men. One might well ask the question, “In what lines of suffering people might we find Jesus today?”
In the month of Holidays before us and into the New Year, how will we treat others (as person, family and parish)? Especially, “the least among us, the lost among us, the last among us?”
Seize the small moments every day to see Christ in others. These small moments allow us to seize the big moments that also come our way. For this is the story of today’s Gospel unfolding before us.
A young homilist was on a roll one Sunday, “This parish has really got to get out and walk!”, said the preacher. Someone in the back yelled, “Let her walk.” The homilist then said, “If this parish is going to really go, it’s got to get up and run!” The man in the back yelled with gusto, “Let her run!” The preacher then said even louder, “if our parish is going to go, it’s got to really fly!” Again from the back, “Let her fly!” The preacher seized the moment, “If this parish is going to fly, it needs all of you to tithe.” The voice in the back if church yelled, “Let her walk, let her walk.”
Today’s Gospel calls us to love, to share, to feed, to welcome and clothe one another.
When we do, we discover that Jesus is truly present in all of our brothers and sisters.
“Let your Love Fly!”