Monday of the 31st week in the ordinary time of the year

Theme: Unity in love

In the 1st reading of today from St. Paul’s letter to the Philippians, we see wonderful words of encouragement to the Philipian church. It is actually an invitation encouraging the people to live a life that is selfless and built on love. Paul emphasizes the need for the people to live in love, in such a way that it will give rise to growth and unity among the worshipping community. This is a wonderful word of encouragement that is still relevant to us today in our own time. This is because we live in a world where people are becoming increasingly self centered and selfish. We are in a situation when many people are building walls around themselves, instead of building bridges that will promote the peace, love and unity that St. Paul is advocating for in today’s 1st reading. This is an invitation that is personal and should be taken seriously by all of us as children of God. It begins with each one of us, and gradually the impact will be largely felt. The big question is, how many of us are willing to take up this challenge that is thrown to us in today’s 1st reading? The most important thing is for us to make up our minds to make a difference in the world around us, and the grace of God will support us when our human strength fails us.

In the gospel reading from Luke, he encourages us to give the poor and less privileged a place in our life and celebrations. If we adhere to the admonition of St. Paul in today’s 1st reading, it will be easier for us to practice what St. Luke is advocating for in today’s gospel. We have to be selfless and allow our generosity to go beyond our family and friends to all those who are less privileged and cannot repay us. This is a necessity in our world today, taking into consideration the fact that most people like to operate within a circle that share so many things in common. But Jesus is saying that we should go outside people on the same level with us and reach out to the less privileged and give them hope and joy. We do not have to be very wealthy to make this happen, all we need is to be truly humane and share the little we have with those who do not have as much as we do. It is never too late to begin; it is an invitation that should not be ignored. May the Lord bless his words in our hearts, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Peace be with you.

Monday of the 31st week in the ordinary time of the year, by Fr. Jude Ifeanyi Ifezime, C.S.Sp