Memorial of Saint Jerome, priest and doctor of the Church
(Job 9:1-12.14-16; Luke 9:57-62)
We do not follow Christ because we have nothing better to do. Nor is his love just a substitute for a brother’s or even a wife’s or husband’s. No, we choose Christ because he has shown us to be the Lord and the way to eternal life. Indeed, he is eternal life such that in knowing him we experience peace and justice. For these reasons Jesus could tell would-be disciples that there is no turning back when he calls.
St. Jerome certainly knew the value of Christ. He mastered the Scriptures so that he could know Christ intimately. He entered intellectual frays which became deadly so that true faith in Christ may be maintained. As a young man, he became a desert hermit in response to a vision of Christ.
We make Christ our first priority when we do not allow anything to interfere with our relationship with him. Pornography and drugs should be easy castaways. Lying and stealing to make our lives easier should also be readily overcome. Even our desire to please wives, parents, or children should not move us to sin. So that those whom we love may also know him, we want to hold fast to Christ.