November 6: Thursday of Week 31 of Ordinary Time, Year A-II:
Philippians 3:3-8; Psalm 105:2-3, 4-5, 6-7; Luke 15:1-10
Click here for the complete text of today’s readings.
What is Jesus saying to us as stewards of his kingship?
(To support Reaching Jesus: 5 Steps to a Fuller Life ... Step Five )
“One sinner who repents” (Luke 15:10).
Paul had a life-transforming conversion. But from what? He says that before his conversion, “in righteousness based on the law I was blameless.” He does say, “I am unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God” (1Corinthians 9:10). But in this he thought he was observing the Law as a faithful Jew.
Can you keep all the laws and be a sinner?
Yes, if you are stagnant.
Francis wrote (Joy of Gospel 11):
Jesus constantly amazes us by his divine creativity. Whenever we make the effort to return to the source and recover the original freshness of the Gospel, new avenues arise, new paths of creativity with different forms of expression… signs and words with new meaning for today’s world. Every form of authentic evangelization is always “new”.
The sin we need to repent of is thinking we know all we need to know, and are doing all we need to do. The sin of the Pharisees was hostile resistance to change: the self-righteousness of a closed mind. Francis said against “restorationists” and “legalists”: “If one has the answers to all the questions—that is the proof that God is not with him… We must be humble… Tradition and memory of the past must help us to have the courage to open up new areas to God” (America Magazine, September 30, 2013).
PRAY: “Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner.”
PRACTICE: Listen to those you disagree with.