Cycle B: 22nd Sunday

As I read the first reading the first thing that strikes me is the question, “What would people say about our nation?” Would they speak of our “wisdom and intelligence”? Would they say, “This great nation is truly a wise and intelligent people”? Given the animosity that is displayed by many in the public today we might rightly question our wisdom and intelligence. What are we, as Catholic Christians doing to improve, to make ourselves wiser or more intelligent? The Psalm reminds us that part of being wise and intelligent is to be concerned with justice. This is perhaps even harder today than ever. We are called to avoid slander, reproach, to lend freely, to accept no bribe, evil thoughts, unchastity, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, licentiousness, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, folly. How many of our civil leaders and politicians fail to set a proper example for the rest of us? How many of us fail to set a proper example for our civil leaders and politicians? Paul reminds us we must be, “doers of the word and not hearers only, deluding yourselves.”

The Gospel reminds us of what is most important. Just avoiding sin is not sufficient. We are called to not just obey the letter of the law but to pay attention to the spirit to which the law is addressed. Where are our· hearts? Unfortunately, even in the Catholic Church we have Pharisees who are more concerned with the letter of the laws than with the salvation of souls.

Author: yuengerwv

Retired Catholic Priest

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