Saturday, October 22, 2011

Reflection on the Sunday readings

My reflection for this Sunday's readings is simple, requiring little commentary. Looking at the first reading, from twenty-second chapter of Exodus:
You shall not molest or oppress an alien, for you were once aliens yourselves in the land of Egypt. You shall not wrong any widow or orphan. If ever you wrong them and they cry out to me, I will surely hear their cry. My wrath will flare up, and I will kill you with the sword; then your own wives will be widows, and your children orphans (verses 20-23)
As with my remembrance of Bl. Pope John Paul II, this passage strikes me as very timely because here in the U.S. we are grappling with the economic difficulties everyone is facing as well as entering into (yet) another election cycle, which seem to me to get longer and longer. I surmise that pretty soon we will just have a perpetual campaign!

As regards this particular passage, we often hear it said that to treat immigrants well is "a biblical injunction." Well, now you know at least one passage of Scripture that explicitly supports that claim, from the Torah no less.

Last Sunday, in his homily at The Cathedral of the Madeleine, Bishop Wester strongly encouraged everyone to read the USCCB's Faithful Citizenship document. Our bishops have established a Faithful Citizenship website. With all the rhetoric and invective already flying about, I urge everyone to take some time at least read the basic document.

A good exhortation arising from this passage of Scripture is found is this passage from the document:
What faith teaches about the dignity of the human person and about the sacredness of every human life helps us see more clearly the same truths that also come to us through the gift of human reason. At the center of these truths is respect for the dignity of every person. This is the core of Catholic moral and social teaching. Because we are people of both faith and reason, it is appropriate and necessary for us to bring this essential truth about human life and dignity to the public square. We are called to practice Christ’s commandment to “love one another” (Jn 13:34). We are also called to promote the well-being of all, to share our blessings with those most in need, to defend marriage, and to protect the lives and dignity of all, especially the weak, the vulnerable, the voiceless (par. 10- underlining emphasis mine)

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