Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Thoughts on next Sunday's Gospel
Next Sunday is the last Sunday of the Liturgical Year and we celebrate the Feast of Christ the King. I love the readings but will only comment on the Gospel today as it is so important.
Gospel Mt 25:31-46
Jesus said to his disciples:
"When the Son of Man comes in his glory,
and all the angels with him,
he will sit upon his glorious throne,
and all the nations will be assembled before him.
And he will separate them one from another,
as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.
He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
Then the king will say to those on his right,
'Come, you who are blessed by my Father.
Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.
For I was hungry and you gave me food,
I was thirsty and you gave me drink,
a stranger and you welcomed me,
naked and you clothed me,
ill and you cared for me,
in prison and you visited me.'
Then the righteous will answer him and say,
'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you,
or thirsty and give you drink?
When did we see you a stranger and welcome you,
or naked and clothe you?
When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?'
And the king will say to them in reply,
'Amen, I say to you, whatever you did
for one of the least brothers of mine, you did for me.'
Then he will say to those on his left,
'Depart from me, you accursed,
into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.
For I was hungry and you gave me no food,
I was thirsty and you gave me no drink,
a stranger and you gave me no welcome,
naked and you gave me no clothing,
ill and in prison, and you did not care for me.'
Then they will answer and say,
'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty
or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison,
and not minister to your needs?'
He will answer them, 'Amen, I say to you,
what you did not do for one of these least ones,
you did not do for me.'
And these will go off to eternal punishment,
but the righteous to eternal life."
I think sometimes we need the reminder of what we are to do for others; and there are many ways of giving nourishment to those who surround us, of welcoming them as they are, clothing them with love and understanding, and being with them when they need us. I am thinking that there are many days when I fail to do all that Jesus asks me to do in helping others; if I really were loving them as Jesus loves me, I would leave nothing undone for my neighbor and would study how I can be of greater help. I think this Sunday's Gospel calls us to love in action and a concentrated effort to see how those around me can be aided - it is not just to feed the hungry, visit the sick, or do what we can for the poor. It is to take positive action to nourish others in all the ways that we can, to be with them and remember that what we do to others we do to the Lord!