01 Oct – Twenty Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time
God’s Spirit Is In The World
We praise God for all his prophets: men and women of every nation and creed who has resisted evil and manifest the Spirit in their lives.
– from the Sunday Missal
Apologies for the late OXYGEN. It’s been a tiring weekend.
I will be going for my annual In-Camp Training from Oct 2-13. Although I don’t foresee and disruption to the daily OXYGEN delivery, please be patient if there are.
The Lord came down in the Cloud. He spoke with Moses, but took some of the spirit that was on him and put it on the seventy elders. When the spirit came on them they prophesied, but not again.
Two men had stayed back in the camp; one was called Eldad and the other Medad. The spirit came down on them; though they had not gone to the Tent, their names were enrolled among the rest. These began to prophesy in the camp. The young man ran to tell this to Moses, “Look,” he said, “Eldad and Medad are prophesying in the camp.” Then said Joshua the son of Nun, who had served Moses from his youth, “My Lord Moses, stop them” Moses answered him, “Are you jealous on my account? If only the whole people of the Lord were prophets, and the Lord gave his Spirit to them all!”
An answer for the rich. Start crying, weep for the miseries that are coming to you. Your wealth is all rotting, your clothes are all eaten up by moths. All your gold and your silver are corroding away, and the same corrosion will be your own sentence, and eat into your body. It was a burning fire that you stored up as your treasure for your last days. Labourers mowed your fields, and you cheated them – listen to the wages that you kept back, calling out; realise that the cries of the reapers have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. On earth you have had a life of comfort and luxury; in the time of slaughter you went on eating to your heart’s content. It was you who condemned the innocent and killed them; they offered you no resistance.
Mark 9:38-43, 45, 47-48
John said to Jesus, “Master, we saw a man who is not one of us casting out devils in your name; and because he was not one of us we tried to stop him.” But Jesus said, “You must not stop him: no one who works a miracle in my name is likely to speak evil of me. Anyone who is not against us is for us.
“If anyone gives you a cup of water to drink just because you belong to Christ, then I tell you solemnly, he will most certainly not lose his reward.
“But anyone who is an obstacle to bring down one of these little ones who have faith, would be better thrown into the sea with a great millstone round his neck. And if your hand should cause you to sin, cut it off; it is better for you to enter into life crippled, than to have two hands and go to hell, into the fire that cannot be put out. And if your foot should cause you to sin, cut it off; it is better for you to enter into life lame, than to have two feet and be thrown into hell. And if your eye should cause you to sin, tear it out; it is better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell where the worm does not die nor their fire go out.”
They say that a good book is one that every time you read it, it gives you a different message. That’s why I think the Bible is good book. I used to think that the Protestant Reformation was a mistake in the history of Christianity, that Christianity got split up because of that incident. But after reading today’s passage, I am not so sure.
We see our Christian brethren casting out devils in Jesus’ name; we see them leading people to Jesus; we see them changing people’s lives through the power of Christ; we see them healing and ministering to the poor and needy. In short, they do what Catholics do. Even if they believe differently in some aspects (and these should not be forgotten), they are still working miracles in Jesus’ name. They are not against us; they are for us.
But yet there are some of us who will do our best to improve our own knowledge so that we can speak to Protestants and point out to them what’s wrong in what they believe, trying so hard to perhaps “convert” them to Catholicism? Is this because we are jealous on behalf of Christ?
Christ is like the rich landowner, generous with his wages, giving the same amount to the last hired as to the first hired. Indeed that parable is a message to the rich among us – to be just. There are few people who have gotten rich through being just; many rich people are rich because they have stepped over others in need, and cheated other people. But there are rich people who are just and have been just all their lives. As with poverty, wealth is given to us for a reason. It is important to know that reason and to use that gift of wealth for Christ and his kingdom.
But whether we are rich or poor, God calls us to be generous and hospitable. Anyone who has travelled to India or the Philippines and see how the really poor live, has come back amazed at their hospitality. They give what little they have, focusing only on their guest and making them happy. We, who have so much more than they, can we not do the same for the guests in our country?
Dear Jesus, help us to be mindful of the guests in our country, just as you once were a migrant during your flight to Egypt. Help us to share our wealth with them, and to focus on their happiness during their stay with us. Help us also to be aware of your own generosity in sharing your Spirit with other non-Catholics, to be mindful that those who are not against you are for you, those who are not against us are for us.
Give Thanks to the Lord for: The opportunities to use my gift for God’s greater glory.
Mon, 02 Oct – Exodus 23:20-23; Matthew 18:1-5, 10; Feast of The Guardian Angels
Tue, 03 Oct – Job 3:1-3, 11-17, 20-23; Luke 9:51-56
Wed, 04 Oct – Job 9:1-12, 14-16; Luke 9:57-62; Memorial for St. Francis of Assisi, religious founder
Thu, 05 Oct – Job 19:21-27; Luke 10:1-12
Fri, 06 Oct – Job 38:1, 12-21, 40:3-5; Luke 10:13-16; Memorial for St. Bruno, priest, hermit, religious founder
Sat, 07 Oct – Acts 1:12-14; Luke 1:26-38; Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary
Sun, 08 Oct – Genesis 2:18-24; Hebrews 2:9-11; Mark 10:2-16; Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time
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Disclaimer: The reflections expressed in this e-mail are the writer’s own. They may not necessarily reflect the teachings of the Catholic Church. Nonetheless we should all be able to learn something from it.