Eleventh Tuesday of Ordinary Time

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD Eleventh Tuesday of Ordinary Time June 16, 2020 WORD of the DAY You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your heavenly Father, for he makes his sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what recompense will you have? Do not the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brothers only, what is unusual about that? Do not the pagans do the same? So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matthew 5: 43-48) How shall I live this Word? Our ‘neighbor’ is ‘ close’, ‘ very close’! In the law, people are asked to love those of their own family, but here Jesus opens us to new horizons! He asks to “love our enemies”, to “pray for those who persecute us”. Jesus commands love, He comes to command something that normally is not lived as a command. But...

Seventh Sunday of Ordinary Time

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD Sunday, February 24, 2019 WORD of the DAY But to you who hear I say, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well, and from the person who takes your cloak, do not withhold even your tunic. Give to everyone who asks of you, and from the one who takes what is yours do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you. (Luke 6: 27-31) How shall I live this Word? We are at the heart of the Gospel message where we are faced with the words that every man has always wanted to hear but that no one ever had the strength and courage to say before Jesus. They are words imbued with a power that tastes divine; it is the definitive law that will never be equated and surpassed. It is the lever that lifts the world from all its grave heaviness and which completely overturns it, upsetting the scale of values. Humanity will henceforth have...

First Saturday of Lent

  FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD First Saturday of Lent, February 24, 2018 WORD of the DAY  But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your heavenly Father, for he makes his sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust.  (Matthew 5, 44-45) How shall I live this Word? Matthew in his Gospel is preoccupied with making clear to the disciples the concept of justice according to Jesus.  In fact, He says if “your justice is not greater than that of the Pharisees, you will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven” (5: 16) The text here presents us with a love that is absolutely opposed to egocentric possessiveness.  The Old Testament did not prescribe hating one’s enemy.  Only in the community of Qumran, which is a sect that taught that anyone who did not belong to it would be destined to eternal darkness and divine punishment. The Word of Jesus is totally different!  He opens to vast horizons of belonging not only for those who love their neighbor, but to an even higher goal:...