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A team of 200 priests comment on daily Gospel

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Liturgical day: Wednesday 28th in Ordinary Time

1st Reading (Rom 2:1-11): You, o man, are without excuse, every one of you who passes judgment. For by the standard by which you judge another you condemn yourself, since you, the judge, do the very same things. We know that the judgment of God on those who do such things is true. Do you suppose, then, you who judge those who engage in such things and yet do them yourself, that you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you hold his priceless kindness, forbearance, and patience in low esteem, unaware that the kindness of God would lead you to repentance?

By your stubbornness and impenitent heart, you are storing up wrath for yourself for the day of wrath and revelation of the just judgment of God, who will repay everyone according to his works, eternal life to those who seek glory, honor, and immortality through perseverance in good works, but wrath and fury to those who selfishly disobey the truth and obey wickedness. Yes, affliction and distress will come upon everyone who does evil, Jew first and then Greek. But there will be glory, honor, and peace for everyone who does good, Jew first and then Greek. There is no partiality with God.
Responsorial Psalm: 61
R/. Lord, you give back to everyone according to his works.
Only in God is my soul at rest; from him comes my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be disturbed at all.

Only in God be at rest, my soul, for from him comes my hope. He only is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be disturbed.

Trust in him at all times, o my people! Pour out your hearts before him; God is our refuge!
Verscicle before the Gospel (Jn 10:27): Alleluia. My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; I know them, and they follow me. Alleluia.

Gospel text (Lk 11,42-46): Jesus said, «A curse is on you, Pharisees; for the Temple you give a tenth of all, including mint and rue and the other herbs, but you neglect justice and the love of God. This ought to be practiced, without neglecting the other. A curse is on you, Pharisees, for you love the best seats in the synagogues and to be greeted in the marketplace. A curse is on you for you are like tombstones of the dead which can hardly be seen; people don't notice them and make themselves unclean by stepping on them». Then a teacher of the Law spoke up and said, «Master, when you speak like this, you insult us, too». And Jesus answered, «A curse is on you also, teachers of the Law. For you prepare unbearable burdens and load them on the people, while you yourselves don't move a finger to help them».

«This ought to be practiced, without neglecting the other»

+ Fr. Joaquim FONT i Gassol
(Igualada, Barcelona, Spain)

Today, we can see how the Divine Master gives us a few lessons: amongst them, He speaks of the tithe and also of the coherence educators (parents, teachers and all Christian believers) must have. In today's Mass, the teachings of St. Luke's Gospel appear in a somewhat synthesized form, but Matthew's parallel passages (23:1…) are more comprehensive and concrete. Our Lord's entire line of thought infers that at the heart and soul of our activity there must be justice, charity, mercy and faith (cf. Lk 11:42).

The Old Testament tithing and our present collaboration with the Church, according to laws and norms, follow the same principle. Notwithstanding, to apply the principle of a mandatory law to small things —as the Masters of the Law used to do— is exaggerated and wearing: «Woe to you also, teachers of the Law! For you prepare unbearable burdens and load them on the people, while you yourselves don't move a finger to help them» (Lk 11:46).

It is true that sensible people can show true instances of unselfishness. We have recent personal experiences of people who, out of their harvest, have given to the Church —for worship and the poor— the 10% (tithe); of others, who reserve their first flower (their choicest fruits), or the best fruits of their orchard; or, of others, who come to offer the same amount they have spent on their holiday vacation; and, of others, who just bring the pick of their work for the same purpose. One can guess all of them have assimilated the influence of the Holy Spirit. Love is imaginative; from small things it manages to take out joy and merits before God.

The good shepherd goes before the flock. Good parents are models to follow: example attracts. Good educators make a point of living by the virtues they teach. This is being coherent. Not only to a point, but fully: living a life close to the tabernacle, the devotion to the Mother of God, some small services at home, spreading good Christian humor... «Great souls know how to take advantage of small things» (St Josemaria).