Tuesday of the Twenty-fifth Week in
(Proverbs 21:1-6; 10-13; Luke 8:19-21)
The old priest was describing “the best man (he) had ever known.” He said it was his father. The “best man he had ever known” was not well-educated as is thought today. But he possessed each of the virtues described in today’s first reading. He was not proud, but he was diligent. He told the truth and took pity on the poor. He listened to others’ instructions and takes note how the wicked end in ruins.
In today’s gospel Jesus does not mention his father when he speaks of his mother and brothers. In all the gospels only God in heaven is Jesus’ father. But his mother and brothers can be said to be many. Jesus calls those who hear the word of God and practice it “my mother and my brothers.” He is specifically referring to his disciples. But in Luke’s gospel his reference does not exclude the possibility of his immediate family being disciples. Mary, especially, showed herself attentive to the word of God when she visited Elizabeth as soon as she heard from the angel of Elizabeth’s pregnancy.
We were made brothers and sisters of Jesus at Baptism. But the distinction needs continual updating. This happens in the Eucharist. We hear the word of God and are nourished by Christ’s body and blood. Then we are sent to put what we heard and were nourished by into action.