Tuesday, September 29, 2015


WEDNESDAY, 26TH Week in Ordinary Time

September 30, 2015 WEDNESDAY, 26TH Week in Ordinary Time
St. Jerome, Priest and Doctor of the Church 
Memorial, White      

Neh 2:1 - 8 / Lk 9:57 - 62

[St. Jerome (340 - 420), priest and doctor of the Church, was an outstanding Biblical scholar who prepared the Latin Vulgate of the Bible.]

Reading: Neh 2:1 - 8
     In the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, I was doing my duty as cupbearer. I took up the wine and gave it to the king. I had never been sad before the king in the past. So, the king said to me, "Why do you look sad? You don't look sick. Is there something that bothers you?"
     I became hesitant. And I said, "May the king live forever! How could I afford not to be sad when the city where my ancestors are buried lies in ruins and its gates are burned down?" The king said to me, "What do you want, then?" I asked help of God from heaven and said to the king, "If it seems good to the king and if he is pleased with my work, then may he send me to the land of Judah, to the city where my ancestors are buried, that I may rebuild it."
     The queen was sitting beside the king, and the king asked me, "How long will you be gone? When will you be back?" I told him the date and he allowed me to leave. And I said to the king, "If it pleases the king, may you give me letters for the governors of the province at the other side of the River that I may travel to Judah, and also a letter to Asaph, the caretaker of the king's forest, for I will need wood for the gates of the Citadel near the Temple, for the walls of the city and for the house where I shall live."
  The good hand of God was sup-porting me, so that the king gave me what I asked. 

Gospel: Lk 9:57 - 62
     As they went on their way, a man said to him, "I will follow you wherever you go." Jesus said to him, "Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head."  
     To another Jesus said, "Follow me." But he answered, "Let me go back now, for first I want to bury my father." And Jesus said to him, "Let the dead bury their dead; as for you, leave them and proclaim the kingdom of God."
     Another said to him, "I will follow you, Lord, but first let me say goodbye to my family." And Jesus said to him, "Whoever puts his hand on the plow and looks back is not fit for the kingdom of God."

     In the Gospel reading we see people who wished to follow Christ. They were touched and moved by Jesus' preaching and life to follow him and be his disciples. Unfortunately, while they wished to follow Christ, they were willing to do so under certain conditions: "first, I want to bury my father"; "first, let me say goodbye to my family." They were hindered by other attachments or by what to them were more important obligations. 
     Christ points out that the following of Christ was truly demanding and allowed no pre-conditions, "Let the dead bury the dead; as for you, leave them and proclaim the kingdom of God"; "Whoever puts his hand on the plow and looks back is not fit for the kingdom of God."
     The Church has declared 2014 as the "Year of the Laity." The Church reminds and encourages the laity who make up the great majority of the Church to fully live out their vocations as members of Christ's Church and followers of Christ. The Church reminds all of the primacy of our call to be "Christians" and to be "Christ-like." 
     Let us pray to Jesus, our brother, for the gift of generosity and courage to answer this call. May he enlighten us to gratefully appreciate the many gifts given to us and to always seek for treasures which last forever. May we learn to use and value whatever we have always looking forward to the kingdom of heaven. May we learn to be generous in our response to Christ.



Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most. 

Have a good day!

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