Monday, November 05, 2012

Repaid at the Resurrection of the Righteous

Repaid at the Resurrection of the Righteous

November 5, 2012
Monday of the Thirty-first Week in Ordinary Time

Do nothing out of selfishness or out of vainglory; rather, humbly regard others as more important than yourselves, each looking out not for his own interests, but also everyone for those of others.  Philippians 2:3-4

"When you hold a lunch or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or sisters or your relatives or your wealthy neighbors, in case they may invite you back and you have repayment.  Rather, when you hold a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; blessed indeed will you be because of their inability to repay you.  For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous."  Luke 14:12-14


Lord of hosts, great God, creator of Heaven and Earth, we rejoice in you! We thank you for abundant life. We thank you for guiding us through paths that can sometimes seem overgrown with thorns.
Like your son, Jesus, we seek good for others. We come before you to ask your help in strengthening us to do your will, to help the poor, to feed the hungry, to comfort the afflicted and to encourage the distraught. Help us bring more grateful servants to your banquet table.
Inspire us all in this Year of Faith to renew our commitment to you and to strengthen our relationship with Jesus Christ, your son. Help us recognize the distractions that keep us from our goal to love you more. (From


Uniting through Christ, with Christ and in Christ helps us to imitate His humility.  Once we are clothed in His robes of humility, being obedient in service is the natural outcome.  No longer do we live to pad our 401K, buy a faster car, a bigger house or a fancier ring.   Nor will we continue to do anything out of a sense of "quid pro quo," because of what we will get back.  We even use our credit cards because of the "rewards" we allegedly get from Citibank or American Express or Discover.
Maybe it is time to be on the express path to discover something else in life.  That alternative lifestyle has been right in front of our eyes and ears every Sunday.  That lifestyle is lived in the spirit of the Acts of the Apostles not the Acts of Madison Avenue or Broadway or Wall Street. Sorry, this is not a week to kick around the proverbial sidewalks of New York. We must live in the spirit of the acts of charity demanded by those in need on the streets of New York, New Jersey, and other storm ravaged places.   But also on the streets of Cairo, Mumbai, and Port-au-Prince.


An NPR story this week alerted us to the plight of impoverished Haiti -- once again the victim of Mother Nature's wrath.  Only this time, the affects there were overshadowed by the effects on the eastern seaboard.
The radio report explained that Hurricane Sandy only sideswiped Haiti during its early days.  However, that glancing blow dumped 20 inches of rain in 24 hours.  Even this indirect hit led to nearly as many deaths there as in the U.S. after the storm made landfall on the Mid-Atlantic coast.  As of Saturday, the small island nation of Haiti had documented 71 deaths caused by Sandy.  Another 21 Haitians were still counted as missing, and many fear the death toll will rise as officials reach affected areas isolated by impassable roads and ruined bridges.
There also are now an additional 18,000 people left homeless in a country already burdened with a severe food crisis. Homes and farms have been destroyed -- farms already not able to meet the needs for food.  Now there will be even LESS production of crops to consume and crops to sell on the open market.
This round of flooding will likely lead to another round of cholera because the nation already lacked adequate water sanitation and sewage systems.
As you consider how to help American victims, also keep in mind that this storm affected Haiti and other island nations in the Caribbean.   
You are invited to support the international relief efforts in Haiti led by CRS ( as well as the domestic efforts at home led by Catholic Charities through its 2012 Disaster Fund ( 

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