Thirty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time
Reading 1: DT 6:2-6
Reading 2: HEB 7:23-28
Gospel: MK 12:28B-34
"You are not far from the kingdom of God." Jesus said to the scribe and with this declaration he gave us a good yardstick to measure how close or how far we are.
Their discussion centered on the Shema which is an affirmation of Judaism and a declaration of faith in one God. The obligation to recite the Shema is separate from the obligation to pray and a Jew is obligated to say Shema in the morning and at night (Deut. 6:7).
Thus the scribe asked Jesus what was the first of all commandments and Jesus replied, "The first is this:
Hear, O Israel!
The Lord our God is Lord alone!
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul,
with all your mind,
and with all your strength.
But then he bookended it with a second taken from Lv 19:18:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
There is no other commandment greater than these."
And there is our yardstick: love of God and love of neighbor.
We show our love of God in loving our neighbor and we love our neighbor because we love God. We cannot say we love God and hate our neighbor.
1 John: 20-21 If anyone says, “I love God,” but hates his brother, he is a liar; for whoever does not love a brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21 This is the commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.
So we can say "Lord, Lord...Jesus, Jesus" all we want but unless our heart is turned toward our neighbor it will be for nothing and don't ask "who is my neighbor?" Jesus has heard that one before.
How do you measure up? What is your attitude toward the poor, the marginalized, people who don't look, speak or even pray like you do?
I know I have work to do myself but Lord by your grace I can do it. May the Lord say that we "are not far from the kingdom of God.
Hear, O Israel!
Hi, welcome to my weekly blog. I'm deacon Michel and I love blogging and the healthy exchange of constructive ideas. Now my mind has been known to wander on a million different things all at once so don't be surprised at what you find here. I often scratch my head and go 'Huh?' at my own thoughts. Feel free to leave a comment and share your thoughts with me.
This blog reflects MY ongoing Christian journey: insights gained through the Holy Spirit, my experiences, my studies, my relationships. The content of this website is solely that of Deacon Michel du Chaussee, and does not represent the Archdiocese of Miami or any other entity of the Roman Catholic Church in any official capacity. Needless to say, I hope that none of my writings are contrary to the doctrines of faith and morals that are reflected in Sacred Tradition or as taught and guarded by the Magisterium of the Church or to the truths of God as revealed in the Holy Scriptures.
For I take seriously what a very wise man has often said to me:
"Ordination is not license for private practice" - Msgr. A. Andersen