Thursday, October 16, 2014
28th Week in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: Eph 1:1-10
Gospel: Luke 11:47-54
Jesus said to the Pharisees, “A curse is on you, for you build memorials to the prophets your ancestors killed. So you approve and agree with what your ancestors did. Is it not so? They got rid of the prophets, and now you can build!”
(The Wisdom of God also said,) “I will send prophets and apostles and this people will kill and persecute some of them. But the present generation will have to answer for the blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the foundation of the world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was murdered between the altar and the sanctuary. Yes, I tell you, the people of this time will have to answer for them all.
“A curse is on you, teachers of the Law, for you have taken the key of knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you prevented others from entering.”
As Jesus left that place, the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees began to harass him, asking him endless questions, setting traps to catch him in something he might say.
(Daily Gospel in the Assimilated Life Experience)
Today’s Gospel reminds me of my experience with the then Cebu Archbishop Ricardo Cardinal Vidal, now retired. While on our way to celebrate the fiesta Mass (Vesperas) in Maslog, a well-developed town in the City of Danao in Cebu, the Cardinal asked for the hardcopy of his homily. We could not open his brief case because it was locked and only the Cardinal knew the numbers combination. The attendant handed over to him the case so he could open it himself. The Cardinal was so sure of his numbers yet he could not open the brief case. After some time we found out that the brief case was handed to him upside down and so the right numbers combination were applied in reverse. The Cardinal had the right key to the brief case but could not unlock it.
This experience fits to a tee today’s Gospel scenario except that the Pharisees, who had the key to knowledge, really intended to keep the door locked. Jesus said, “A curse is on you, teachers of the Law, for you have taken the key of knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you prevented others from entering.” The Pharisees knew the law by heart, but such knowledge did not take them any farther than self-righteousness and legalism.
Like the Pharisees we know so much of the truth also. We have the 7 sacraments, the great teaching about the 3 persons in one God and the 12 fruits of the Holy Spirit. If these were numbers combined (7-3-12), we’ve got the numbers combination right. Yet we need to keep in mind the Cardinal’s brief case. To what avail is having the right numbers combination if we continue living our lives upside down? What for is our profound knowledge about God if not to empower us to live upright lives in justice and charity? – Rev. Fr. Dan Domingo P. delos Angeles, Jr., DM. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: www.frdan.org.
Prayer for the day: God our Father, grant us the grace of sincerity so that we my live out the truth in our lives. Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
SAINT OF THE DAY: St. Hedwig, Religious. She was born in Bavaria about the year 1174. She married a prince of Silesia and they had seven children. She led a most devoted life, looking after the poor and the sick, and founding hospitals for them. When her husband died, she entered the monastery.