A Penitent Blogger

Mindful of my imperfections, seeking to know Truth more deeply and to live Love more fully.

Quid sum miser tunc dicturus? Quem patronum rogaturus? Cum vix iustus sit securus?
Recordare, Iesu pie, Quod sum causa tuae viae: Ne me perdas illa die...

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Shun the bum?

In today's first reading (2 Thessalonians 3:6-10, 16-18), St. Paul warns us about those who appear to act improperly.

We instruct you, brothers and sisters,
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,
to shun any brother
who walks in a disorderly way
and not according to the tradition they received from us.

In the Gospel (Matthew 23:27-32), our Lord warns us about those who appear to act properly.

You are like whitewashed tombs,
which appear beautiful on the outside,
but inside are full of dead men's bones
and every kind of filth.

Even so,
on the outside
you appear righteous,
but inside
you are filled with hypocrisy and evildoing.

(May God have mercy on me)

Faithfulness in word and appearance is necessary, but faithfulness in heart and deed is even more necessary.

By their fruits you will know them.
(Matthew 7:20)

We need, of course, to look first at ourselves: do we fail to walk and live according to the truth of Christ? Are we disorderly bums? Are we whitewashed tombs?

(May God have mercy on me)

We must also help each other as we struggle together up the road to holiness by the grace of the Holy Spirit, with sincere humility and loving honesty.

"If your brother sins against you,
go and tell him his fault,
between you and him alone.

"If he listens to you,
you have gained your brother.

"But if he does not listen,
take one or two others along with you,
that every word may be confirmed
by the evidence of two or three witnesses.

"If he refuses to listen to them,
tell it to the church;
and if he refuses to listen even to the church,
let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.

...Then Peter came up and said to him,
"Lord, how often
shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him?
As many as seven times?"

Jesus said to him,
"I do not say to you seven times,
but seventy times seven."
(Matthew 18:15-17,21-22)