Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time   Year C   22 September 2019

“God’s love for the world.

Vast, flood of mercy,

flung on resistance”.       Denise Levertov

Life can be, and often is, complex.

Sometimes complex questions can only be successfully addressed to small groups. Today the disciples are addressed. Perhaps the story was out about a rich steward of a vastly richer master who had been caught siphoning some funds despite his enormous salary? And even the rich master acknowledged the managerial qualities of his servant in learning about the actions taken to ensure his own future. He still got the sack but ensured his future.

Digging and begging was not on his agenda!

I doubt if that scenario is on the agenda of the top ten executives reported in our papers this week. The children of the world are still astute in dealing with their ups and downs!

It seems that Jesus was reminding “the children of light” to clean up their act now that the new prophet had arrived. Thus, a pertinent moment of decision for his disciples. What are you, who follow, doing to make sure you will be welcomed into “the tents of eternity”? This warning coupled with the final injunction “You cannot be the slave both of God and of money” is another plank in the following of Jesus platform.

Selfishness and generosity constantly disturb our equilibrium.

We are called to be generous…with our time, with our thoughts, with our deeds, with our wealth.

We may never measure up to the quoted standard:

” Vast, or flood of mercy”

and we will experience “resistance”.

Let’s add listening and patience and understanding to our list; generosity, above all, and that attitude will bring great changes to our lives and help change the world.

 

Mons Frank

Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C 15-09-2019.

Pope Francis is increasingly being referred to as a ‘Prophet’. We know that in many sections of some communities he is unpopular. I am not sure that popularity is written into the job description for the Papal Office. He recently spoke about the seeming reaction to his teaching and actions, particularly the negative ones and assured us that he can cope.

It struck me that the opening line of the Gospel this week might apply to him as they did to the other prophet, Jesus.

“The tax collectors and the sinners were all seeking the company of Jesus to hear what he had to say…”

“The Pharisees and the scribes complained…”

Much earlier in Luke (7:29-30) we read:

“All the people and tax agents had heard…”

“But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected God’s plan…”

It reminds me of the oft. quoted phrase: “Let the one with ears to hear, listen.”

And all that is important to understand the three parables that follow. All try to remind us about the wonderful truth of our God as revealed in the scripture and hopefully in each of our lives:

  • God loves us
  • We are his daughters and sons
  • We are not slaves as both sons thought, in vastly different ways and alienated themselves from their loving Father, but in different ways.

He has come to seek out the lost; our media highlights the huge numbers of lost in sometimes very graphic ways. We have a twenty-four-hour lifeline…Call upon our merciful Father…

And found we are, when we genuinely listen for his voice.

Mons Frank

Twenty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time   Year C   1 September 2019

It is natural to break a journey, even in an A300. We look forward to the drink and food trolley. It sometimes enables us to break the ice with our next seat passenger. It sometimes enables us to have a little quiet time…but things happen even at 39,000 feet.

Food is the catalyst and being seated around a table enables the discourse to be productive.

Time and place are not available for this weekend’s incident; we know not where this meal took place. However, the main ingredients are present:

  •  A meal
  •  A leading Pharisee
  •  “They”
  •  It was the Sabbath
  •  He had just cured the man with dropsy

They watched him closely…so much for a genuine invitation!

The doors are open for another lesson… Will those present have the appropriate ears?

There are pecking orders across all segments of society…and of all societies, not just the G7. Some are necessary, but places are not the real reason to get excited; to be invited is reason enough.

At the table we are meant to be fed, nourished, challenged and inspired. If in a sense there is no room on the guest list or on the agenda for the crippled, the lame and the blind, then our meal together will be the poorer. We may not always be able to celebrate like L’ Arche does, but our agenda must be open, like their tables are open.

Today the meal at the table is almost a forgotten art in so many houses. Real homes have real meals!

Jesus has just added “the measure of the Kingdom” to the common practise of hospitality so valued in his society.

Is it present in ours?

Mons Frank