Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Memorial of St. Bruno, priest

(Jonah 3:1-10; Luke 10:38-42)

Today the Church remembers St. Bruno.  He was born in the eleventh century – a time of notorious corruption among the clergy.  Many parish priests had concubines.  Monks were living lives of leisure more worried about who was abbot than about praying to the Lord.  Bruno did something about the cancer.  He formed an order of monks with a stringent rule.  The monks would live basically as hermits eating alone and coming together only three times a day for prayer.  We can see Jesus approving this way of life in today’s gospel.

The two sisters Mary and Martha welcome Jesus into their home.  Mary sits and listens to Jesus while Martha busies herself with household chores.  After a while, Martha begins to fret: “Why isn’t Mary helping her with the housework?” she says aloud.  Jesus must correct her.  Mary realizes the significance of Jesus’ coming.  He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.  Not attending to him in order to do daily chores is like cleaning the basement when the pope is sitting in the parlor.

“There is a time for everything,” the Book of Ecclesiastes tells us.  There is certainly much time to fulfill daily duties.  But there is also a time when we must set those chores aside to give thanks and praise.  Once in a while we may be tempted to miss Sunday mass in order to cook, clean, or study.  That is committing Martha’s mistake.  We attend to him first and allow everything else fall in its proper place.