I am continuing to write a message in the absence of Father Kuzma who is nearing half of his time away in Florida. Fr. Francis is handling his many appointments with such a generous heart. I almost feel guilty for being retired. May God bless him too, especially with good health.
On the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, the three main Scriptures readings give very clear and strong teachings about the need for all human beings to exercise their free will. The Prophet Sirach (15:15-20) states “if you choose, you can keep the commandments, and they will save you. If you trust in God, you too shall live, and to act faithfully is a matter of your own choice. . . . Before each person are life and death, good and evil and whichever one chooses, that shall be given. . . . God has not given anyone the permission to sin.” All our choices, big or small ones, good or evil, have corresponding effects.
Saint Paul experienced failure in trying to obey God’s laws – “I do what I do not want to do and I don’t do what I should be doing” – until he met the Lord Jesus Christ, chose to believe in Him and opened his heart and mind to the wisdom and power of the Holy Spirit. May our first desire be to lovingly obey the will of God, at all cost, since “what no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the human heart conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him.” (1 Cor.2:9)
In the Gospel (Mt. 5:17-37) the Lord Jesus gives what may be his toughest teaching about the necessity to obey God’s Commandments and avoid sins since they effect our present and eternal life. All who think that since the 1960's, the Church’s teachings about the Final Judgment, Purgatory, Hell, murder, abortion, contraception, adultery, marriage, divorce, lust, slander, theft, injustice, oaths, etc., are no longer applicable to our “evolved” society, need to read this passage and all the Scriptures prayerfully over and over again.
Saint John-Paul II said that the loss of the consciousness of sin was the greatest threat for the human race and the planet. On the other hand, the wisdom, power and mercy of Jesus Christ given and received through prayer, the Rosary, Scriptures, penance, conversion and the Sacraments are the only “vaccine” that can defeat evil and bring a civilization of peace and love.
May God’s promises to those who love and obey his will and his warnings to those who choose to continue to live in sin motivate our prayers, sacrifices and actions. May God bless you and Our Lady, Saint Joseph, the Angels and the Saints protect and guide you always.
Fr. Luc (Retired Priest)
A pastor needed to quickly raise funds for his church. The choir director and organist (names withheld) suggested that Father would ask all parishioners who could commit at least one hundred dollars to please stand up at the end of each weekend Mass. So Father fearfully made the call . . . and the musicians sang: “O Canada”.