Friday of the Twenty-Second Week in Ordinary Time
Malvern Minute

 

Friday of the Twenty-Second Week in Ordinary Time

September 4, 2020

Deacon Anthony J. Cincotta

Assistant Director for Retreat Ministry

 

First Letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians 4:1-5

Psalm 37

Luke 5:33-39

 

Which comes first, fasting or feasting?  Jesus is repeatedly called a bridegroom and Saint John the Baptist calls himself the friend of the groom.  In today’s Gospel narrative the scribes and Pharisees asked our Lord a simple question about why His disciples do not fast likes other Jewish groups.   The question was valid since fasting, along with prayer and almsgiving,  was one of three most important religious duties for a Jew.  Jesus responds with sort of a “mini-parable.”  He explains it is because He likens His earthly ministry to a wedding feast and compares His disciples as wedding guests.  To fast at a wedding feast is considered a great insult to the bride and groom and their families.  There is a time for fasting and a time for feasting. 

Jesus calls Himself a bridegroom whose presence is reason enough for rejoicing and not fasting.  We feast because He is present with us and then when He is not with us, we fast.  So the Lord says to us, to both feast and fast.   How then does the Lord come to us so that we will know when to feast?

  • The Lord comes to us when we pray: Every prayer must be a feast encounter with a loving God who belongs in all of our hearts.
  • The Lord comes to us through people: Every person we see at any time of the day is a sign that God has not given up on the world. 
  • The Lord comes to us in the poor: Every time we see the poor we must hold out our hands in a helping manner in order to celebrate the compassion of Jesus.

May we be ready to renew ourselves constantly and be open when Jesus comes to us in our prayers, in the people and in the poor.

Question of the Day:  How will you conform your life as when to feast and when to fast?

Prayer:  Lord, fill me with your Holy Spirit that I may grow in the knowledge of your great love and truth.  Help me to seek you earnestly in prayer and fasting that I may turn away from sin and willfulness in order to conform my life fully to your will.  May I always find joy in knowing, loving and serving you, especially in my efforts to help those who have less than me.  Amen.

Please continue to pray for the victims of the coronavirus and for all who are affected by this unprecedented pandemic as well as for peace in our country and in our world.

Prosit

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