Daily homily for Wednesday of the 28th Week in Ordinary Time Cycle I
Theme: Love God, love your neighbour
By: Fr. Francis Onwunali
The commandments of God are all based on love of God and love of neighbour, for “God is love” (1 John 4:8). In like manner, all Church’s laws are geared towards “salvation of souls” (Can. 1752), an act of God’s love.
In the gospel (Luke 11: 42-46), Jesus condemns the Pharisees for overlooking justice and the love of God in their actions. As legal experts, by being exacting in their interpretations of the laws, neglecting to care for the poor and the weak, they reject God’s Word. Jesus compares them with “unmarked graves”, who being filled with rot, defile those who unsuspectingly listens to their teachings. Does love form the basis of your relationship and actions towards others?
St. Paul in the first reading (Rm. 2: 1-11), addresses the Jewish members of the Christian community at Rome who were acting with an attitude of superiority over the Gentiles who have become believers. Paul warns them of being judgmental for “in judging others you condemn yourself, since you behave no differently from those you judge”.
Dear friends, it is always easy to talk about the other person and condemn those whom we consider not doing well. However, most times, in doing so we put a blind eye to our own sinfulness and wrongdoings. Also we tend to equate the person with the wrongdoing. Jesus abhors and condemns sin but loves the sinner. This is how Jesus wants us to relate with one another.
I pray as we journey in life today, we will always first try to see others with the inalienable dignity they have as created in God’s image and likeness and work towards lifting up the “weak”, the “poor” and the “needy”. As God has forgiven us in Christ Jesus, may we be more understanding and forgiving of others. With the Psalmist we pray: “instruct me, Lord, in your way; on an even path lead me” (Ps. 27: 11). Have a judgmental-free day!
Fr. Francis Onwunali