Thirty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time  Year C  3 November 2019

On Thursday, the presenter of the 7.30 report on the ABC lamented many times about “what’s happened to our Australia?” and used other words of similar sentiment. The immediate background of the segment was the Woolworths saga, and included a reference to Bunnings and the 7/11 stores, the ABC and others; all of whom have confessed to bad wages practice. Further, there were references to drought and the latest antics of protesters. I wondered if Leigh Sales would get around to suggesting that a reading of the Gospel for this Sunday might provide a way forward.

“…if I have cheated anybody, I will pay him back four times the amount.”

Then, it might have been an honest mistake. Wage rates are often very complex.

Nonetheless, Zacchaeus was a wealthy man.

Happy? Satisfied? Content?

Well, he ran after Jesus in his anxiety to see what kind of man this Jesus was, and as one commentator put it,

“They exchanged trees!”

Reading One reminds us: “Lord, lover of life…(who) little by little corrects those who offend”.

Zacchaeus responds to the self-invitation of Jesus, puts up with the heckling of the crowd and makes his statement, another little correction on his path to conversion. It seems that for one of our newest canonised saints he, too, had a series of corrections on his way to the fullness of faith; namely John Cardinal Newman. Leaving behind our attachments, books or wealth, perceived intellectual positions or simply stubborn beliefs is necessary to enable the heart to accept the invitation to dine with him.

So often in Luke we read that the one who clings to wealth seems very closed to the Prophets call.  Our Pope Francis keeps reminding us in word and deed that our world and each of us must share generously with the poor and least developed nations to hear the genuine call of the Prophet, Jesus.

May we make another correction this week on our road to conversion.

Mons Frank


P.S. It has rained overnight in Bendigo; 11mls to 11am. Praise God. I hope all have received rain.