21ST SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST (29TH S. Ord Time)
Proverbs, Chapter 14, Verse 2
Those who walk uprightly fear the LORD, but those who are devious in their ways spurn him.
Bishop Fulton Sheen is one of his weekly addresses in February 1999 entitled "Truth - Forgotten Ideal" stated: Submission is one of the deepest needs of the human heart. After a century and a half of false liberalism, in which it was denied that anything is true, and that it makes no difference what you believe, the world reacted to totalitarianism. It grew tired of its freedom, just as children in progressive schools grow tired of their license to do whatever they please. Freedom fatigues those who want to shirk responsibility. Then it is they look for some false god into whose hands they can throw themselves, so they will never have to think or make decisions for themselves. Nazism, Fascism, and Communism came into being during the twentieth century, as a reaction against false liberalism.
29th Sunday in Ordinary Time
GOSPEL. Matthew 22:34-40
When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, and one of them, a scholar of the law tested him by asking, "Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?" He said to him, "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments" (Mt 22:34-40).
Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost
Spiritually arming oneself (for both now and Armageddon) and forgiving each other so that we may be forgiven on Judgment Day.
GOSPEL. Matt, xviii. 23-35
At that time. Jesus spoke to His disciples this parable: The kingdom of God is likened to a king who would take an account of his servants. And when he had begun to take the account, one was brought to him that owed him ten thousand talents. And as he had not wherewith to pay it, his lord commanded that he should be sold, and his wife and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made. But that servant, falling down, besought him, saying: Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. And the lord of that servant, being moved with pity, let him go, and forgave him the debt. But when that servant was gone out, he found one of his fellow-servants that owed him a hundred pence; and laying hold of him, he throttled him, saying: Pay what thou owest. And his fellow-servant, falling down, besought him, saying: Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he paid the debt. Now his fellow-servants, seeing what was done, were very much grieved, and they came and told their lord all that was done. Then his lord called him, and said to him: Thou wicked servant! I forgave thee all the debt, because thou besoughtest me: shouldst not thou then have had compassion also on thy fellow-servant, even as I had compassion on thee? And his lord, being angry, delivered him to the torturers until he paid all the debt. So also shall My heavenly Father do to you, if you forgive not every one his brother from your hearts. What would Jesus teach by this parable? The king is God; the servant is mankind; the ten thousand talents, equal to ten millions of dollars, signify the enormous andexcessive debts which men contract by their sins against God: a sum so exceedingly great as to show clearly that the debt of man to God is without limit, and truly overwhelming. The hundred pence, a small sum, equal to perhaps six or seven dollars, denotes the offences which others have given us, and which, in comparison with our offences against God, are insignificant. By this parable, therefore, Jesus intended to say: As God forgives your immense debts if you sorrowfully pray for forgiveness, so ought you to forive your fellow-men their comparatively light debts when they ask forgiveness of you. Unless you grant it, you shall receive no pardon from My Father.
Who are like that unmerciful servant? All unmerciful and hard-hearted persons; particularly;
1. rulers who oppress the people by excessive taxes;
2. those who oppress widows and orphans, and keep from servants the wages due them
3. those who have no patience with their debtors, but deprive them of house and goods rather than be indulgent to them. God will deal with such men in the otherworld as they have dealt with their neighbors in this.
4. Finally, all persons who will not forgive injuries done them, but preserve hatred in their hearts; who bring such as have injured them before the courts, and even seek to injure them out of revenge.
How can they hope to obtain mercy? What is meant by forgiving from the heart? It is to banish from the heart all hatred and desire of revenge; to bear in our hearts a sincere love towards our enemy, and to manifest it by works of charity.
If we think of the multitude of sins which God has forgiven us, how can we refuse to forgive trifling wrongs against ourselves? At any rate, let us not forget that God forgives us only when we also forgive from the heart.
Merciful God, grant me grace to be truly merciful towards my fellow-men, as Thou art towards me.