Tuesday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time
(II Corinthians 8:1-9; Matthew 5:43-48)
A recent magazine article tells the story of how the very rich give away much less of their income than poorer people and then, not to charities but to non-profits like universities and hospitals. St. Paul addresses the issue in today’s second reading.
Paul appeals to the Corinthians to be generous in the collection for the poor in Jerusalem. He says that the churches of Macedon – principally, the Philippians and the Thessalonians – although relatively poor in comparison to the church in Corinth, have proven to be remarkably self-sacrificing in their contributions to the collection. He then asks the Corinthians to consider Christ who sacrificed the richness of divinity to become a lowly human so that humans could share in divine glory.
We receive so many requests from churches and charities that it seems the regular mail service is no more than a conduit for such appeals and for advertisement. We should not become frustrated nor feel guilty about not giving to everyone who asks. Rather, we should give what we can – even until it hurts -- to those who seem most in need of our help. Doing so, we imitate Christ and can hope to share in his glory.