Sunday, October 23, 2011

Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Exodus 22: 20-26
"You shall not molest or oppress an alien, for you were once aliens yourselves in the land of Egypt." Listen to these words fellow Americans! Almost all of us were once aliens in these lands. We have taken our fill from them, and now we do not want to share. We are happy to have the labor of the alien, and to benefit from the products that he produces, as long as he stays in his place. He may have the scraps from our table, but we refuse to allow him to dine with us. Be careful, for surely God will hear his cries, and our Creator is fair and just. What goes around, comes around; or more crudely "Karma's a bitch!"

1 Thessalonians 1: 5c-10; Matthew 22: 34-40
"You shall love your neighbor as yourself." Perhaps we have such a hard time loving our neighbor, because we really don't love ourselves very much. Our culture may be incredibly narcissistic, but at our core we believe that we are fundamentally evil, sinful, flawed, corrupted by original sin. Even those who claim that humans are essentially good don't really believe it; they may want to, but they look over their shoulder just in case. Why else would be believe that we need "Jesus, who delivers us from the coming wrath." We act like we are some pathetic, miserable child, begging our parent not to give us the beating that we deserve. What bullshit! Our Brother did not come to save us; his life is a testament that salvation is already ours. This universe is our paradise, a part of our Creator's plan. It tells us over and over again that God loves us and that we are good. If you truly believe this, then you will not be able to help but treat your neighbor in the same way.