September 26, 2021 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time
What are the little ones? They are the poor, the marginalized, the women and men at the well, the Zacchaeus’ looking for Jesus from a tree, those mired in sin, the blind who want to see, and the lame who want to walk. They are the lepers and the different ones who have been told that they are unclean, and the ones who suffer from abuse and grave injustices and oppression. They are children who want nothing more than to be loved and enjoy celebrating their innocence. These are all the little ones and they are all vulnerable. Life already brings them burdens, we don’t need to add to them.
St. Oscar Romero said, “When the church hears the cry of the oppressed it cannot but denounce the social structures that give rise to and perpetuate the misery from which the cry arises.” Why are so many people still so gravely hurting? We have the resources and the means to make things better. We choose not to. There are still those things called greed, pride, lust, apathy, jealously, gluttony, and anger that prevent us from seeing each other and people to be loved and not objects to be used. Is this how God intended things to be?
God loves what is good and upright. It doesn’t matter who did it or where it came from. In God’s eyes, the end result is always faith, hope, and love. Those will always unite a person with God. We fill our lives with many things that are not good either for ourselves or for others. All of us have to work to discover what it is, exactly, that leads to the world’s brokenness. There are people, systems, and ideologies in place that foster oppression and injustice rather than equity and fairness. Sadly, our complacency can be the greatest evil. Turning a blind eye, ignoring the truth, and believing that we are helpless to fix so great a problem, does little to move us closer to the kingdom of God. As members of the Body of Christ, we cannot condone anything that keeps people in misery.
As it is said, charity begins at home. Perhaps a good place to start is with our own households and making sure their foundations are properly laid.
The deacon is a man of faith, who is called from the community that already recognizes his dedication to service. He makes a lifetime commitment to serving the People of God by proclaiming the Word, assisting and presiding at liturgies, and ministering in the areas of charity and social justice. A deacon gives witness to his availability to the community by addressing present and emerging needs of the Church.
The Diocese is inviting interested men of strong and active faith, who can demonstrate a record of service in the communities in which they live, work and worship, who may wish to explore a possible call to ordained ministry as a permanent deacon, to first speak with their pastor for an initial conversation. They may also contact Deacon Edward Giblin, Director of the Office of the Permanent Diaconate, at email@example.com, for additional information.
A potential candidate must be at least 35 years of age and no older than 62 years of age at the time of ordination after a five (5) year period of formation. He must be in good health, emotionally mature, have stable relationships and must have the wholehearted support of his wife (if married) and family to enter the phase of inquiry. Because the parish is the primary experience of Church for most inquirers, the parish community is asked as well to invite from among its members men who exhibit strong faith and a spirit of service and encourage them to consider a possible vocation to the permanent diaconate.
Monday: Zec 8:1-8/Ps 102:16-18, 19-21, 29 and 22-23 /Lk 9:46-50
Tuesday: Zec 8:20-23/Ps 87:1b-3, 4-5, 6-7 [Zec 8:23]/Lk 9:51-56
Wednesday: Dn 7:9-10, 13-14 or Rv 12:7-12a/Ps 138:1-2ab, 2cde-3, 4-5 /Jn 1:47-51
Thursday: Neh 8:1-4a, 5-6, 7b-12/Ps 19:8, 9, 10, 11[9ab]/Lk 10:1-12
Friday: Bar 1:15-22/Ps 79:1b-2, 3-5, 8, 9 /Lk 10:13-16
Saturday: Bar 4:5-12, 27-29/Ps 69:33-35, 36-37 /Mt 18:1-5, 10
The disciples started to feel proud because they thought they were the "in" group of friends of Jesus. One day they saw a complete stranger working powerful miracles in the name of Jesus. The disciples told the stranger to stop because he was not part of their special group. The disciples should have encouraged him instead.
Dear God, help me to work side-by-side with other people who love Jesus, no matter who they are.
Something to Draw
Draw a picture of yourself helping another Christian who does not belong to your church.
Mission for the Week
Pray for missionaries around the world who teach others about Jesus.
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Early in their Exodus journey, Moses taught the young Joshua an important lesson on avoiding jealousy and trusting the Lord’s providence.
How do you avoid the trap of jealousy and envy?
James speaks of the trappings and dangers of excessive wealth.
What do you think should be the believer’s proper disposition toward money?
Jesus warns his disciples against the danger of causing other believers to sin.
What do you think would motivate a Christian to do this?
God already has the solution.