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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.

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Homilies :: Latin Rite
Saturday of the 24th Week in Ordinary Time Download This Homily

September 21, 2019

Saturday of the 24th Week in Ordinary Time


Eph 4: 1-7, 11-13

Ps 18: 2-3, 4-5

Mt 9: 9-13


Feast of St. Mathew, Apostle and Evangelist

 

Gospel Reading

 

As Jesus passed by, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the customs post. He said to him, "Follow me." And he got up and followed him. While he was at table in his house, many tax collectors and sinners came and sat with Jesus and his disciples. The Pharisees saw this and said to his disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?" He heard this and said, "Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do. Go and learn the meaning of the words, I desire mercy, not sacrifice. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners."

Reflection


St Matthew, Apostle and Evangelist

 

Many people are under the impression that vocation is a call to status. Quite the opposite, vocation is a call to action, not to a position. “Choosing” as well as “being chosen” make people feel special or segregated from the rest of the folks. This feeling separate has got both advantageous and disadvantages. Whether it is going to be advantageous or disadvantageous depends on the attitude of the people towards it. Some feel proud and special while some others feel depressed and dejected on account of the choices they made or the choices thrust upon them. Each and every one of us belongs to certain groups on account of our personal choices or thanks to the choices others made on our behalf. Those choice-makers include, God, our parents, teachers, and many others. Whether we like it or not somehow we have to deal with those conditions. Our sex, color, height, birth place, talents, parents, relatives, and a thousand other things are not our personal choices, yet it is we who have to live with those. Today we celebrate the feast of Matthew the tax collector, one of the apostles of Jesus. In Matthew’s life too there were many situations of personal choice or forced upon him. Whether his occupation as a tax-collector was his personal choice or hereditary we do not know. That is not important for us either. When Jesus called him, he was in his tax-collector’s office. He decided to follow Jesus and left everything behind. But his title followed him and his friends still continued to be his friends. When he arranged a dinner for Jesus at his house, he invited his friends as well. He brought to Jesus what he was and what he had. Jesus graciously accepted them all.

 

However, the scribes and the Pharisees were not happy with that attitude of Jesus. They believed in a kind of caste or class system where such inter-caste, interclass relationships and associations were a taboo and forbidden. In one way or another even today apartheid is in practice in every country, in every religion and in every society. I do not intend to say that Jesus came to abolish all differences. Differences are part of the amazing plan and program of God. Unity should not be confused with uniformity. It is sensible to be different and to be involved in different activities. What we need is not uniformity but unity. It is the apartheid mentality that we need to defeat. We should learn to appreciate and promote unity in diversity. It is the pharisaic hypocritical mentality that upholds apartheid. Through today’s first reading St Paul teaches the Ephesians how to overcome this pharisaic attitude: do not own our blessings. What we are is a gift and an opportunity to be at the service of the Body of Christ. We all together constitute the Body of Christ. We should not despise any part of our body, which is the mystical body of Christ. Even though apartheid based caste and color are gradually diminishing, apartheid based on economics, region and religion are in advance. It is an anomaly for Catholics to exhibit apartheid mentality. Treating some of God’s children as unworthy is pharisaic and Un-Catholic. It is to them Jesus says, “Go and learn the meaning of the words, I desire mercy, not sacrifice. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.” Recently, our Pope Francis asked the priests and the bishops assembled for a retreat in Rome as follows: “Are we Puritans?!!!”

 

Dr Kurian Perumpallikunnel CMI

 


Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India to assist the clergy to preach the World of God and also as a handy spiritual resource for the people of God to reflect on the daily spiritual passages at their convenience. You can download this on your Android phone from Google play and you can see the Gospel reflections of the whole year. The size of this app is just 2.5 MB. We welcome your suggestions and contributions to server you better.

May God Bless you

Fr. James M L CMI

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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.


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