Reflection from Fr. Taylor: October 29, 2017, 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Exodus 22:20-26    1 Thessalonians 1:5c-10    Matthew 22:34-40

The Gospel today about the two Great Commandments goes hand in hand with our first reading. It’s about welcoming aliens and those who may be different from us into our own community.

This is appropriate today when there is so much concern about migrants, immigrants and refugees who are among us. This can not be separated from the two great commandments of Loving God above everything and Loving our neighbor as ourselves.

In the first reading Jesus reminds the Israelites that they must be welcoming to others for He took care of them in their long captivity In Egypt. Many of us have known what it’s like to be a stranger in a foreign place. It makes all the difference in the world when you are welcome and made to feel as a good human being. We must work to create an environment of peace, non-violence, justice and care for all of God’s people. Many who have come into this country as refugees and immigrants have been exploited and taken advantage of in their own native places. We as Americans have a hand in this as so many companies in this country have factories and labor camps in places where people are the poorest.

In our human attempts to love our neighbor, we must be changed by what impacts our neighbor. Any victim of violence makes us all a victim of violence. Our Gospel this week is a call to action, loving our neighbor causes us to never give up speaking the truth of our oneness and solidarity with others. Jesus says “to those who have been given much, much is going to be demanded.” We are among those who have been given much and the Lord in turn ask us to treat our visitors and those among us as we would treat Him.

 

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