Friday, December 14, 2018 at 10:24 AM
Christmas Vigil Masses, 4:00 PM,6:00 PM, 7:30 PM & Midnight. Christmas Day Masses 9:00 AM, 10:30 AM, Noon. New Liturgical norms - bottom or our home page.

9/10/17 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time - Fr. Damian

A college student called me up a few days ago and was crying on the phone. She explained to me how difficult it was to live her Catholic faith on campus. She was crying not because she had made mistakes but because so many of her friends were getting themselves into serious troubles. One friend recently wanted to kill herself. After talking to her for over four hours she was able to talk her out of it. She told me her friend’s birthday was coming up and wondered what she should give her. I told her, “Give her a rosary.” She told me, “Father, my friend doesn’t believe in God.” I told her, “It doesn’t matter. Give her a rosary.” She told me, “But she won’t know what to do with it.” I told her, “Will you listen to me and give her a rosary!!!”

Well, the next day, she called me up and told me what happened. She said, “Father, I thought about what you said and decided to give her the book, Seven highly effective habits for teenagers. She liked it and thanked me. But then I handed her a little box. She opened it and saw the rosary. I explained to her what it was. She looked at me with tears in her eyes and said, “This is the most meaningful gift I have ever received!”

 

Today's Mass readings tell us of our responsibility to one another, our responsibility of fraternal correction. There are various levels of correction: the most important is correction rooted in love.

How do we know if the correction given to another is loving rather than condemning or hurting?

It is said that the first sign of fraternal correction done in love is the presence of "aray." As one is correcting another, he feels "aray" while doing so: a loving parent feels pain giving feedback and correction to a child for wrong done; a friend himself feels hurt correcting his best friend. The "aray" which comes with the correction shows concern and a careful execution of the correction.

 

The first reading from the prophet Ezekiel tells us of our responsibility to correct others: we are responsible to the Lord if we do not correct someone who had done evil; we are accountable to the Lord if we simply dismiss evil as if it were nothing. It is a sin of omission which packages itself as an act of love.

In the second reading Paul tells the Church in Rome that fraternal correction done in love cannot harm the neighbor: "Love cannot do the neighbor any harm, so love fulfills the whole Law."

 

In the Gospel reading Jesus details various steps we can do in fraternal correction: first, between the one who was harmed and the one who did the harm; second, involve two or three others to settle the problem; and third, invite the Church, the community.

 

Sin and harm to others are overcome by loving forgiveness between persons, within their larger community. Jesus sums up fraternal correction in the context of community living,

 

We owe everything to God who loved us unconditionally. For this reason, we owe our love to our neighbor. It’s hard to be human today! We are expected to be perfect in everything we say and do! That’s probably why we are so terrified of saying the wrong thing or doing the wrong thing. That's probably the reason why we don’t help or get involved with anyone.

 

But the Lord tells us to get involved; to do His Will; to open oneself to Him and to others. He invites us to follow in his example. He invites us to be responsible for one another in our community.

 

Comments

There are no comments for this post.

Add a comment

Will not be shared.
Add Comment
 
Online Giving

Online Giving

Secure and Convenient Donate now!