25TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME: SEPT. 23, 2012.
(For today’s Readings, click on Mass Texts, on HomePage.)
Weekly ‘Soul Food for the Hungry Adult’:
A few years ago, under a previous Government in Ireland, there was a cartoon about the Taoiseach (Leader) of the country at that time,- Bertie Ahern. It went: ‘Infamy! Infamy! They all have it in fa’ Me!’
Well, in today’s first reading, they all have it in for somebody or other, some totally innocent person. Who was ‘the virtuous man’ that the writers of The Book of Wisdom are talking about in today’s reading: ‘Let us like in wait for the virtuous man for he annoys us and opposes our way of life…he accuses us of playing false to our upbringing… Let us test him with cruelty and with torture and explore this gentleness of his…’ And so it goes on, ‘Let us condemn him to a shameful death, since he will be looked after,- we have his word for it’.
And still, today all over the world, innocent people, working for justice and right, are often hounded and even killed. Oscar Romero, in El Salvador, Sr. Dorothy Stang in the Amazon, , Gerardo Orteaga in the Philippines… the list goes on and on, still.
And Jesus was not immune to this, by any means. After coming down from the mountain,- that is, after his Transfiguration when his glory was revealed to three disciples- he begins to warn them, over and over, that yes, even if he was indeed the Messiah/ the Christ/the Anointed One, still he would be delivered into the hands of his enemies, who will put him to death, and that three days later he would rise again. The disciples couldn’t grasp it, couldn’t take it in. But Jesus kept telling them.
And then, as they squabbled later about who was the Greatest among them, who was The Most Important, Jesus took a child, set the child in front of the Twelve, and told them that welcoming such a child was welcoming Jesus himself,- because Jesus stood with the children, saw their dignity, and that they too were ‘Most Important’. Did the Twelve grasp this bit, either? Probably not right away. It took a lot of living before they came to recognize the truth of it. EVERY child is a V.I.P. !
And if the Twelve were slow to get it, maybe so are we. Food for thought, food to satisfy the hungering soul.
‘Infamy! Infamy!’ The world will have it ‘in fa’ Me’, if I follow this Jesus. He never said it would be easy, he just said it would be worth it!
Seamus Devitt C.Ss.R., Esker.