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There’s an amusing story about two parish priests discussing about how they share the Mass collection with their assistant priests. “That’s easy,” the younger priest said. “I simply draw a big circle on the floor. I toss the money up in the air and what falls inside is mine; what falls outside goes to my assistant.”
“My system is simpler and more effective,” bragged the older priest. “I simply toss up all the money in the air. What goes up is for my assistant, and what comes down is for me.” Following the Law of Gravity, obviously the assistant gets nothing!
The theme of this 17th Sunday gospel is about sharing, but not the kind which those parish priests practiced.
We read in today’s gospel about Jesus’ miracle of the multiplication of bread and fish. The famished Jews had only five loaves of bread and two fish, which a little boy offered. But out of these, the Lord blessed and, behold, the multiplied so much that the 5,000 people were able to eat and even overflowed with leftovers.
What’s the message Jesus is telling us? First, we have a God who is compassionate, having a “moved-with pity” attitude. As Christian followers, he wants us to emulate his example of showing sympathy and compassion.
Moreover, it’s not enough that we just feel sorry for the needy but we must show it in action. In the words of a spiritual writer, “They do not have compassion those who do not show it in action.”
During these trying times of COVID-19, there have been inspiring acts of sympathy and compassion. For instance, a man showed compassion when he collected his cash fund assistance of P6,000. When he saw some elderly women who lined up for hours only to be turned away due to the alleged lack of fund, he was moved with pity and said to the barangay officer, “I’ll just donate my share to them. I can manage to survive with my little pension.”
Likewise, there are groups of wealthy businessmen and movie celebrities who exemplified compassion by raising funds to alleviate the sufferings of numerous stranded people unable to go home to their provinces.
However, there are some people who seemingly help by lending money to the poor who desperately want to put up a small business. But the lender imposes such an exorbitant interest that the pitiable borrower could no longer pay. Those “loan sharks” are not helping but rather oppressing the poor. Their heartless act cries up to Heaven for vengeance.
Compassion is not exemplified only in material ways but also in immaterial like visiting the sick, consoling those who’re weighed down with depression and serious problems. However, since we’re presently in lockdown, we can convey our message through phone.
Another way of showing compassion for the sick is through PRAYER. We invoke the Lord for their holistic healing, that is, their wellness of heart, soul, mind, and body.
Kindness and compassion are very important teaching of the Lord. In the Last Judgment when Christ the Universal King will judge us, we will not be asked how intelligent, how rich or how good-looking we are, but by practical acts of mercy like feeding the hungry, visiting the sick and prisoners (read Mt 25,31ff.). As Pope Francis once said, “our good deeds will be our passport to eternal life.
ASK YOURSELF. How much acts of compassion have I done? In the midst of numerous worldly preoccupations, let us not forget God’s mission of mercy and compassion for us; above all, put it into concrete action.
FAITH WITHOUT WORKS IS DEAD (James 2,26).
THE LIGHTER SIDE. Beggar to a wealthy man passing by: “Please, sir, be kind … even if it’s only for a cup of coffee. The rich man said: “Here…this will buy you 10 cups of coffee.”
After a week, the beggar meets the rich man. Very angry, he says: “Hey, it’s all your fault. The 10 cups of coffee almost killed me of hypertension!”
A politician was giving a talk about world hunger. “Millions of people in the world are starving. They eat barely once a day.” But he was speaking at a dinner, overflowing with mouth-watering food and choice wines!
APPEAL FOR THE SICK. One way of showing compassion is by helping our indigent sick like a Negie V., sick of COVID-19, five-year-old leukemia patient Alison Genesis L., Rosanna C., M. Maranga, Jacky L. sick of asthma.
Donate any amount. For inquiry, e-mail me at: [email protected]
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2021-07-25 00: 12: 00
As you well know !