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Saturday, 13 August 2022 18:43

20th Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year C - 2022

Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time.

Year C

Readings: Jeremiah 38:4-6,8-10, Hebrews 12:1-4 Luke 12:49-53

Lord, Come to My Aid!

Fr Prakash Menezes SVD 150The first reading from the Prophet Jeremiah speaks of how Jeremiah was ill treated for doing God’s work. He is thrown in the well since he is accused of dampening the spirit of the soldiers and the people by speaking the truth. He is punished for being honest in the presence of the Lord, and it can happen to us as well. When we stand up for truth and be honest in our approach we can be hated and treated badly by people, and sometimes by our own loved ones!

In the Gospel today, Jesus speaks of this division. “Do you suppose that I am here to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division,” he says. It sounds scary, how come the Prince of Peace speak of division? How come within a household people can become enemies?

I have come to bring fire to the earth TwitterWhen one follows Jesus’ way and stands up for the Christian values, one can be challenged. I think a good example would be the Christians standing up for protecting the dignity of life and respecting life from conception to natural death.Many people find it hard to accept why we do that? We are even branded as ancient and out of touch with the world! Division!

Shortly after Jesus’ resurrection, in the times of the early Church, when some of the family members began following his way, divisions emerged within families and people handed over their own family members to the authorities. Even in our own times, in some countries, people are betrayed by their own family members for following their faith.

No wonder the Psalmist today prays, Lord come to our aid! Yes, it is challenging to follow the way of the Lord. It can be difficult to live an honest life. At times it almost feels impossible to hold on to the Christian principles! But with the help of God, we can do it, especially when we allow God to work in our lives.

Jesus himself faced challenges. He was punished and was put on the cross despite the life of love he lived. He died knowing he is loved by God. And God raised him up and brought us to the hope that all of us are able to live as Jesus lived. All of us can walk the way he walked, even though we may be hurt and punished for the sake of God’s kingdom.

Let us then embrace that fire Jesus brings on this earth. That fire of love which burns brightly in our lives given to us in our own baptism. Let us spread this fire to our brothers and sisters who have lost their way by following the values of this world. And may this fire engulf us to make us truly the followers of Christ who dedicate their lives to stand up for truth and justice. And this is my prayer for all of us today. Amen.

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In the spirit of reconciliation, the Society of the Divine Word, Australia Province, acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea, sky, and community.

We acknowledge their skin-groups, story-lines, traditions, religiosity and living cultures.

We pay respect to their elders, past, present, and emerging, and extend that respect to all indigenous peoples of New Zealand, Thailand, and Myanmar.

We are committed to building with them, a brighter future together.