Monday, October 20, 2008

I just noticed something about Luke's Gospel. It features a woman and a man who both try to get Jesus to intervene in a matter involving a sibling. In both cases, Jesus begs off. Athough he is the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, he is not into triangling. More significantly, of course, he uses the occasion to teach the petitioners what is amiss in their own presuppositions.
The woman was Martha (yes, I am still meditating on Luke 10!). She was "burdened with much serving," but Jesus told her that "only one thing is needed," and Mary was already focused on it. In today's Gospel, we hear a man complaining (whining?) to Jesus that his brother won't share the inheritance. And Jesus gives them both a lesson about greed. In effect, he is repeating his message to Martha: "one thing only is needed"--"a man may be rich, but his possessions do not guarantee him life." It's exactly this Gospel lesson that many of the financial movers and shakers in our country need to hear. Some of those people have dedicated their lives to amassing wealth, making money an end in itself. In effect, they are subordinating their own lives, their whole being, to money; sacrificing themselves (and all the millions who lost so much in the stock market collapse) to Mammon!
So how can we make this Gospel heard?

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