Thursday of the Twenty-Ninth Week in Ordinary Time
Malvern Minute


Thursday of the Twenty-Ninth Week in Ordinary Time

October 24, 2019

Deacon Anthony J. Cincotta

Assistant Director for Retreat Ministry


Memorial Feast: Saint Anthony Mary Claret (1807-1870)

Romans 6:19-23

Psalm 1

Luke 12:49-53

I would suspect that no  matter how old we are we sometimes, on occasion, need a “stern” talking to.  In today’s readings both Saint Paul and Jesus speak to us out of their frustrations.  Both are in contact with people who say that they accept the message, but they do not follow through.  They are both feeling short on support.

When we are committed to something greater than ourselves, a sign of our real commitment is the demonstration of support that we give.  An example of this would be the sacrament of marriage.  If either the husband or the wife feels the other is not giving them the amount of support they need regarding a particular matter the feeling of lack of support would certainly lead to frustration. 

So Jesus shocked His disciples when He declared He would cast fire and cause division rather than peace upon the earth.  But what kind of “fire” did He really have  in mind?  “Fire” in biblical times was associated with God and with His action in the world and in the lives of His people.  An example is the burning bush which was  not consumed when God spoke to Moses.  God’s fire also purifies and cleanses, and it inspires a reverent fear of God and of His Word in us. 

Jesus regarded the coming of the kingdom of God as a time of judgement.  His Word of judgement was meant to help people take seriously the consequences of their choice – that is either if they are for or against God. 

Sisters and brothers, Christianity is loyalty to Jesus Christ, a loyalty that takes precedence over every other relationship.  The love of God compels us to choose who will be first in our lives.  Jesus challenges His disciples, and all of us, to examine who they love first and foremost.  Accept the “stern” talk from Jesus and pray that we respond with strength, support and appreciation to our Risen Lord.

Question of the Day: Will you accept our Lord’s warning and commit yourself to serving Him with all your mind, heart, and strength?

Prayer: Lord God, be in me and stay with me in life and death.



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