FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD
28th Thursday of Ordinary Time
October 17, 2019
WORD of the DAY
Woe to you! You build the memorials of the prophets whom your ancestors killed. Consequently, you bear witness and give consent to the deeds of your ancestors, for they killed them and you do the building. Therefore, the wisdom of God said, ‘I will send to them prophets and apostles; some of them they will kill and persecute in order that this generation might be charged with the blood of all the prophets shed since the foundation of the world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah who died between the altar and the temple building. Yes, I tell you, this generation will be charged with their blood! Woe to you, scholars of the law! You have taken away the key of knowledge. You yourselves did not enter and you stopped those trying to enter.” When he left, the scribes and Pharisees began to act with hostility toward him and to interrogate him about many things, for they were plotting to catch him at something he might say”.
(Luke 11: 47-54)
How shall I live this Word?
The prophet is always an uncomfortable person, feared because he tells the truth that we often want to hide. History repeats itself every time: the prophet is recognized as such when he is gone. When we find him in front of us, we listen to him unwillingly. He ruins our projects, makes us experience the distance that still separates us from God, makes us sad, because if it weren’t for his words we would have felt alright. Yet we always need prophets, even if we can only appreciate them too late. We need those who tell us things to our face, those who succeed in ripping off the veil of false modesty that makes us strangers to the truth. We need those who make us discover the inconsistency of our religiosity, of false idols that we build without even realizing it. The word of Jesus possesses the strength to unhinge even those sepulchers, those mausoleums where perhaps we would like, even today, to enclose the memory of the prophets, hoping to continue doing what we want, without hearing them anymore while they remind us of our misdeeds!
Whenever I find myself faced with a decision to make, I will stand honestly before my heart and wonder if it is at peace. If I feel upset or I realize that I act on the basis of a feeling of sadness, anger, malevolence, disturbance (in other words, if I am in desolation), I will understand that the choice will be inappropriate, good only in appearance or for the moment .
The Voice of Evagrio Pontico, Church Father
Be the doorkeeper of your heart and do not let any thought enter without first interrogating it. For each thought that comes up, ask: Are you one of ours or of our opponents? And if it is ours, it will fill you with peace; if it is instead of the enemy, it will confuse you with anger and will excite you with desires.
Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Via dell’Ateneo Salesiano 81, 00139 Rome, Italy
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