Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Tuesday of the Twenty-second Week in Ordinary Time

(I Corinthians 2:10b-16; Luke 4:31-37)

Sr. St. John died a prophet. Entering the convent in 1942, she spent most of her years teaching. At first she concentrated on simple messages from catechism and English grammar. As time passed, her lessons touched on more controversial subjects like the needs of the poor and of prisoners. Perhaps Sr. St. John showed her prophetic zeal most when she volunteered to serve with sisters from her congregation in Rwanda just after the massacres there. She returned to the United States to remind Americans that divine love does not come easy but extracts the whole of one’s being: body, soul, and mind. In the first reading today, St. Paul names this kind of sacrifice as having the Spirit of God.

Paul has proclaimed Jesus Christ to the Corinthians by telling how Christ died on the cross as the supreme example of God’s love for the world. Now the Corinthians are being urged to assume that love for their own with exemplary lives in support of one another. They are to stop boasting and bickering, and most of all they must put aside all immoral behavior. They are to live in the Spirit of God that has been revealed to them.

We also are tested every day whether we live in the same Spirit. It is not just our outrage with abortion but, really more critically, our care for our neighbors that shows whether God’s Spirit has become our own.