The liturgy for this Sunday reminds us that our relationship with God is revealed through our relationship with others...
Reflections on the readings for the Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time (September 18, 2022): AM 8:4-7; PS 113:1-2,4-6,7-8; 1 TM 2:1-8; LK 16:1-13
MISSIO offers “Preaching Mission,” as a homily help, providing connections to mission from the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.
As Christians, we need to respect our neighbors and seek the welfare of those in need.
Jesus wanted His followers to be keenly aware of the responsibilities that they accepted by believing in Him. Our Lord called on His disciples, both then and now, to recognize that He is the Redeemer of people everywhere and of every generation. He is both God and man. In addition to having faith in Him, we are called to love Him as He loves us -- and to love all His children as well. This means our fellow Christians, of course, but non-believers as well. In his letter to St. Timothy, St. Paul makes a point of expressing regard for the worth of everyone. “I ask that supplications … and thanksgivings be offered for everyone, for kings and for all in authority, that we may lead a quiet and tranquil life in all devotion and dignity. This is good and pleasing to God our savior, who wills everyone to be saved and to come to knowledge of the truth. For there is one God. There is also one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as ransom for all” (1 Timothy 2:1-6). The Church is called to open its arms to all; and to do all we can to live in peace with everyone. That starts with praying for others. Certainly, we want people to accept the gift of faith as God offers it to them. But we must also desire and seek their welfare in all things.
When Paul mentions praying for everyone, for kings and for all in authority it is a good reminder that we should be asking God’s mercy for each and every human being. This includes not only for those we know in our own communities, but for people throughout our country and around the world. All those who exercise religious leadership and authority as well as government officials and public servants who have civil power over hundreds or over millions need our prayerful support. They -- and we -- need to be open to God’s grace and will. Whatever influence anyone of us has must be at the service of God to really honor Him and help our brothers and sisters. If we are people of peace and justice, we need to act like we are. No one who says, “I am a Christian” is telling the absolute truth if we do not contribute to the spiritual and material well-being of those whose souls or bodies are in need of loving-kindness, support, and respect.