Photo illustration by Phil Younk
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Serve others to serve Jesus
Based on the readings: Am 8:4-7; 1 Tm 2:1-8; Lk 16:1-13
More on discipleship!
In the first reading, Amos, the Prophet, strongly admonishes and denounces those who create hardship for the poor. He warns the Israelites about their empty religious worship while they tolerate injustice.
The second reading from 1 Timothy is a call to prayer. This is particularly relevant as Pope Francis is calling us to pray for peace throughout the world – especially in war-torn Syria and the Middle East. The Holy Father emphasizes the need to pray for Lebanon “that it may find its hoped-for stability” and for Iraq “so that the sectarian violence may lead to reconciliation.”
He also asks prayers for “the peace process between Israelis and Palestinians” and for Egypt, “so that all Egyptians, Muslims and Christians may commit themselves to build up together a society dedicated to the good of the whole population.”
In the Gospels the past few Sundays, Jesus spoke about the demands of discipleship. He said people are more important than money and things. Jesus taught about true riches – to love and be loved.
Jesus is not just urging us to be unselfish and to serve and help people as a way to be happy. What Jesus is calling us to do is see that our lives, talents, abilities, time, possessions and money have been given to us to manage and use for building a lasting relationship between God and ourselves, and between others and ourselves. To be his disciples, we must give up all use of material things that does not have love for God and others as the goal. We must serve others in everything we do. If we faithfully use what God has given us, as he intended, he will give us heaven. This is Jesus’ “Good News.”
The church, through its missionaries and network of ministries, helps people in need not only in countries all over the globe but even in our country.
We can show our love for God and for people in need by making donations to organizations such as Catholic Charities, the St. Vincent de Paul Society, Catholic Relief Services, the Catholic Church Extension Society and so on.
“Children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in deed and truth” 1 Jn 3:18.