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RECOGNISING OUR SPIRITUAL POVERTY

Father Francis's picture
Twenty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time

1 Tim. 6:2-12 & Lk. 8:1-3

Timothy is being encouraged to teach sound doctrine by Saint Paul in today's first reading. To teach otherwise would be ignorant and full of self-conceit leading to jealousy, contention, abuse and wicked mistrust of one another.

He then goes on to talk about money and gives us that famous quote that “the love of money is the root of all evils”. Having riches does not mean we are spiritually doomed, any more than poverty automatically assures us of salvation. Poverty can help us to recognise our complete dependence on God or it can become a source of bitterness and resentment. Money can lead us into lives of charity or lives of self-indulgence in which we feel no need of God.

Paul reminds Timothy to take firm hold of everlasting life to which he was called at his profession. It is good for us to remember our baptism when we were chosen to be a child of God. This was something that St. Louis, King of France did. Instead of adding the title 'King of France' when official documents were signed he simply wrote Louis of Poissy, this being the place of his baptism. He never forgot that day because it was the beginning of his path to eternal life.

It is worth noting how today's Gospel reading tells us of the preaching tours that Jesus made, accompanied by His Apostles and certain women who provided for His and their needs. The thought of women following a rabbi would have been regarded scandalous, if not sinful, at that time because women were regarded as socially and spiritually inferior to men.

But Jesus chose them for they were faithful, humble and ready to learn, and as much in need of salvation as the rest of mankind. They followed Him all the way to Jerusalem, and some even stood by Him at Calvary when His own Apostles had fled in fear! Such faithfulness was ultimately rewarded. Some of these women had the privilege of being the first witnesses who proclaimed the wonder of Jesus’ resurrection.

Lord Jesus, help us to see our need of forgiveness, as these women did, and may we share with them a place in Your Kingdom of Heaven.

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