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Showing posts with label Wisdom. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wisdom. Show all posts

Sunday, July 19, 2020

A Homily - The Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A)

First Reading – Wisdom 12:13, 16-19 ©
Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 85(86):5-6, 9-10, 15-16 ©
Second Reading – Romans 8:26-27 ©
Gospel Acclamation – Ephesians 1:17, 18
Alternative Acclamation – Matthew 11:25
The Gospel According to Matthew 13:24 - 43 ©


The Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A)

Listen to the faith of your forebears and take heart.

There is one God, the creator of the universe, one God the creator of us all, one God who never judges unjustly, one God omnipotent, one God who is lenient to all.

God demonstrates power through mercy, and justice through grace, teaching us to emulate the divine by looking on our sins and bringing us to repent.

This is true for one and all.

Speak truth concerning God’s mercy, God’s compassion and God’s love; these are the paths of divine and God’s light is always shining on them. When we are merciful, compassionate and loving, we honor the will of God, reflecting on all whom we encounter the divine light.

Do not hope for God to interject God’s will on your behalf as you strive with your fellows for any of the things of this world; rather conform your will to the will of God, if you are poor you will still be happy, if you are destitute, you will still have hope, if you have enemies they will no longer bother you and if you are rich you will be a blessing to others.

It is wise and good to anticipate the coming of God, just as it is wise and good to desire God’s presence. Anticipate that moment, relish it, cherish it, while remaining present to the people and events that are actually occurring in your life.

When you are in prayer and your thoughts are unformed, when your feelings are unclear and no words come to your mind, or when the words that do come are inappropriate for prayer, then be silent, quiet your mind, still the murmurs in your heart, let go of the voices; be silent and listen.

Let your prayers be prayers of listening.

Remember the life of Jesus, and God whom he called Father

Is god glorious? God is the creator of the universe. God’s greatest place is in relationship to us; God’s children as a loving parent.

May each and every one of come to the full knowledge of God.

There is hope in the knowledge of God, always remember that the hopes you have for yourself and those you love are to be extended to everyone; even those you do not love, for that is the way God leads us.

If you think that God has promised rich glories to be the inheritance of the saints; remember that the first will be last and the last will be first, and that riches are not counted in gold and silver and precious things.

Be mindful.

The teachings of Jesus cannot be treated like a shell game, though they are often treated by the church as such, and have been since the beginning as Matthew’s Gospel illustrates.

The way of Jesus is not a long can, it is not a bait and switch, it is a simple teaching that cannot be controlled or owned by any one group of people.

Be mindful of this.

God, the creator of the universe, God has hidden nothing. The truth is in the open for anyone to see. The wise and the powerful, the learned and the clever, the weak and the meek, everyone has access to the same truth, to the knowledge of God, of justice, of hope and love.

Who are the wise and powerful, who are the learned and the clever, who are the faithful and childlike? In every generation, you will see a new group rise up, labeling the elder generation as out of touch, blind, privileged, in the dark, corrupt.

It is an endless cycle and the truth remains the same; love justice, be merciful, do good, serve God through the loving service you provide to one another, to your family, your friends, your neighbors, the stranger, even your enemy.

Just because a person may be wise and powerful, learned and clever or a child of the church, does not mean they recognize the truth when they see it, or act upon it when they do.

It is not your station in society, it is not how other people regard you, it is not the titles you have earned\ or the ways that you have been marginalized that give us the tell on how you will fulfill the calling to follow Jesus and keep to the way. What matters is what is in your heart, and your willingness to trust in the content of your hope.

Consider the Gospel reading for today, and bear this in mind:

The Gospels were written long after Jesus died.

Matthews Gospel was compiled by a community of believers between 80 and 100 years after his death.

If you practice mindfulness in your reading you can see two threads in the Gospel:

The teaching of Jesus as remembered by the community, and the community’s interpretation of that teaching, one that they believe promotes their interests.

These threads are often out of synch with other.

Practice discernment and you will be able to see movement from Jesus’ view of the way as understood by the people who first listened to him, to the view of the Church and those who were endeavoring to preserve his teaching. When the gospels report that Jesus is deliberate using mysterious messaging to hide something from the people, passing on secret teachings to his disciples alone, look harder and you will see the Church putting itself in the place of authority rather than the Spirit of Truth..

This is when the Church places its own interests above the teaching of Jesus, and this is where they begin to lead people astray, substituting simple wisdom for fantastical stories about angels, and the evil one and the end of time.

Be mindful of this and reject that messaging, focus instead on the way, which is loving and patient and kind.

Plant the smallest of seeds in the hearts and minds of your listeners and wait, the seed will grow into a mighty tree.

Allow the yeast to leaven the dough, it will leave no part of the bread untouched.

Let the weeds grow until the harvest. The wheat will go to the granary, the weeds will go to the fire, and remember, in the scriptures fire is an image representing our encounter with God, the creator of the universe, God who is just and loving, and good.

Watch them burn in a column of fire, ascending straight to the heavens while lighting our way.

First Reading – Wisdom 12:13, 16-19 ©

You Will Grant Repentance After Sin

There is no god, other than you, who cares for every thing, to whom you might have to prove that you never judged unjustly.

Your justice has its source in strength, your sovereignty over all makes you lenient to all.

You show your strength when your sovereign power is questioned and you expose the insolence of those who know it; but, disposing of such strength, you are mild in judgement, you govern us with great lenience, for you have only to will, and your power is there.

By acting thus you have taught a lesson to your people how the virtuous man must be kindly to his fellow men, and you have given your sons the good hope that after sin you will grant repentance.

Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 85(86):5-6, 9-10, 15-16 ©

O Lord, you are good and forgiving.

O Lord, you are good and forgiving,
  full of love to all who call.
Give heed, O Lord, to my prayer
  and attend to the sound of my voice.

O Lord, you are good and forgiving.

All the nations shall come to adore you
  and glorify your name, O Lord:
for you are great and do marvellous deeds,
  you who alone are God.

O Lord, you are good and forgiving.

But you, God of mercy and compassion,
  slow to anger, O Lord,
abounding in love and truth,
  turn and take pity on me.

O Lord, you are good and forgiving.

Second Reading – Romans 8:26-27 ©

The Spirit Himself Expresses Our Plea in a Way that Could Never be Put Into Words

The Spirit comes to help us in our weakness. For when we cannot choose words in order to pray properly, the Spirit himself expresses our plea in a way that could never be put into words, and God who knows everything in our hearts knows perfectly well what he means, and that the pleas of the saints expressed by the Spirit are according to the mind of God.

Gospel Acclamation – Ephesians 1:17, 18

Alleluia, alleluia!

May the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ
enlighten the eyes of our mind,
so that we can see what hope his call holds for us.


Alternative Acclamation – Matthew 11:25

Alleluia, alleluia!

Blessed are you, Father,
Lord of heaven and earth,
for revealing the mysteries of the kingdom
to mere children.


The Gospel According to Matthew 13:24-43 ©

Let Them Both Grow Till the Harvest

Jesus put another parable before the crowds: ‘The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field. While everybody was asleep his enemy came, sowed darnel all among the wheat, and made off. When the new wheat sprouted and ripened, the darnel appeared as well. The owner’s servants went to him and said, “Sir, was it not good seed that you sowed in your field? If so, where does the darnel come from?” “Some enemy has done this” he answered. And the servants said, “Do you want us to go and weed it out?” But he said, “No, because when you weed out the darnel you might pull up the wheat with it. Let them both grow till the harvest; and at harvest time I shall say to the reapers: First collect the darnel and tie it in bundles to be burnt, then gather the wheat into my barn.”’

He put another parable before them: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed which a man took and sowed in his field. It is the smallest of all the seeds, but when it has grown it is the biggest shrub of all and becomes a tree so that the birds of the air come and shelter in its branches.’

He told them another parable: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like the yeast a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour till it was leavened all through.’

In all this Jesus spoke to the crowds in parables; indeed, he would never speak to them except in parables. This was to fulfil the prophecy:

I will speak to you in parables and expound things hidden since the foundation of the world.

Then, leaving the crowds, he went to the house; and his disciples came to him and said, ‘Explain the parable about the darnel in the field to us.’ He said in reply, ‘The sower of the good seed is the Son of Man. The field is the world; the good seed is the subjects of the kingdom; the darnel, the subjects of the evil one; the enemy who sowed them, the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; the reapers are the angels. Well then, just as the darnel is gathered up and burnt in the fire, so it will be at the end of time. The Son of Man will send his angels and they will gather out of his kingdom all things that provoke offences and all who do evil, and throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth. Then the virtuous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Listen, anyone who has ears!’

Sunday, November 3, 2019

A Homily - The Thirty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C)

First Reading – Wisdom 11:22-12:2 ©
Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 144(145):1-2, 8-11, 13b-14 ©
Second Reading – 2 Thessalonians 1:11-2:2 ©
Gospel Acclamation – Luke 19:38, 2:14
Alternative Acclamation – John 3:16
The Gospel According to Luke 19.1 - 10 ©

Listen to the wisdom of the sage!

God, the creator of the universe; God is the infinite and the eternal. God is omnipresent, everywhere, God is not, not present in any space. God is omniscient, God knows all things, not in the mode of abstract particulars, but in the intimate made of being; God knows you as you know yourself. God is omnipotent, this is not a reference to raw power, though all the power in the universe belongs to God, but it means that God has the perfect ability to accomplish God’s will.

Know this:

What is infinite, is infinitely greater than the entire sum of finite things and beings.

The spirit of God dwells in all things and beings, and God loves all in whom God’s spirit dwells.

As the prophet says:

“In your sight the whole world is like a grain of dust that tips the scales, like a drop of morning dew falling on the ground.

“Yet you are merciful to all, because you can do all things and overlook our sins so that we can repent.

“Yes, you love all that exists, you hold nothing of what you have made in abhorrence, for had you hated anything, you would not have formed it.

“You spare all things because all things are yours, God, lover of life, you whose imperishable spirit is in all.

“Little by little you correct us all.

Pay attention to the scripture and me mindful of where it falls into error.

The psalmist is mistaken, when he refers to God as a king.

God is not a king.

God is the creator of the universe, God is present in all times and all places; even in the deepest places of the human heart.

God has made us free, and God does not intervene directly in human events. Do not pray for God to do so, such prayers are mere vanities.

Contemplate the vast power of God, and then contemplate the innumerable ways of God’s love and mercy.

Listen to the words of the apostle!

Be mindful of the matters he wants to caution us about.

Pray for your brothers and sisters, for your mother and father, for your sons and daughters; pray for all your friends and family members, for their families and most of all, pray for the stranger among you, for the alien in your midst, pray for those who wish you harm, and for those who oppose your interests.

Pray for them as God prays for them, in a spirit of love and humility. Pray that you will find them worthy, and that they will find you worthy of love, just as God does.

Do not look for glories, pray for the peace of God.

Be mindful!

Listen to the words of the Apostle, there are many who call themselves Christians who pretend to know the secrets of the universe or the path to God’s favor, they preach on it even while they deviate from the way Jesus taught us.

Call out the false prophets among us, point out their false claims, do it in the spirit God has given you, do it in the Spirit of truth.

As you do so remember this, God is not king, or a lord.

The creator of the universe does not wear a crown.

We do not seek glory as we struggle on the way toward salvation. As we follow Jesus we seek out the lowest of the low, we do not seek the highest heaven, we seek to serve those in the deepest dark, returning them to the light of love.


The gift of life is not transactional. It is free. We do not have to ask for it, just as we did not ask to be born, like true love, eternal life comes to us without conditions.

God, the creator of the universe, came to us in the person of Jesus. If you trust in the teachings of Jesus you will find peace in this world, you will understand that the things we endure here: pain and suffering, alienation and uncertainty, hunger, disease and death, these are all temporary.

You will see the world of light and life beyond the mortal veil.  

There is no condemnation in God, or in the ministry of Jesus. There is hope and love and mercy.

Be mindful and cleave to the truth.

No one is condemned because they refuse to believe in the scriptures, or believe in Christian doctrines, or the dogma of the church.

No one is condemned by God no matter ho egregiously we err, God pours out the divine love on all creation, God does so continuously.

There is no magic power in a name or an article of belief, we are given a warning because of this, if we are not able to trust in the way of Jesus, and trust is the meaning of faith, if we are not able to trust in the way and we are selfish, instead of giving; malicious instead of loving, harmful instead of healing, then we will suffer in this world, even as we increase the suffering of others.

Faith in Jesus means liberation in the here and now, freedom in the present reality, which is a blessing to everyone who finds it and to all whom they encounter.

Be mindful.

Do not judge. Make no assumptions about the piety of others.

Everyone is a sinner, and everyone is good;

Everyone loves, and is worthy of love.

That is the whole of the gospel.

First Reading – Wisdom 11:22-12:2 ©

You Are Merciful to All, Because You Love All That Exists

In your sight, Lord, the whole world is like a grain of dust that tips the scales, like a drop of morning dew falling on the ground.

Yet you are merciful to all, because you can do all things and overlook men’s sins so that they can repent.

Yes, you love all that exists, you hold nothing of what you have made in abhorrence, for had you hated anything, you would not have formed it.

And how, had you not willed it, could a thing persist, how be conserved if not called forth by you?

You spare all things because all things are yours, Lord, lover of life, you whose imperishable spirit is in all.

Little by little, therefore, you correct those who offend, you admonish and remind them of how they have sinned, so that they may abstain from evil and trust in you, Lord.

Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 144(145):1-2, 8-11, 13b-14 ©

I will bless your name for ever, O God my King.

I will give you glory, O God my king,
  I will bless your name for ever.
I will bless you day after day
  and praise your name for ever.

I will bless your name for ever, O God my King.

The Lord is kind and full of compassion,
  slow to anger, abounding in love.
How good is the Lord to all,
  compassionate to all his creatures.

I will bless your name for ever, O God my King.

All your creatures shall thank you, O Lord,
  and your friends shall repeat their blessing.
They shall speak of the glory of your reign
  and declare your might, O God.

I will bless your name for ever, O God my King.

The Lord is faithful in all his words
  and loving in all his deeds.
The Lord supports all who fall
  and raises all who are bowed down.

I will bless your name for ever, O God my King.

Second Reading – 2 Thessalonians 1:11-2:2 ©

The Name of Christ Will be Glorified in You, and You in Him

We pray continually that our God will make you worthy of his call, and by his power fulfil all your desires for goodness and complete all that you have been doing through faith; because in this way the name of our Lord Jesus Christ will be glorified in you and you in him, by the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

To turn now, brothers, to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and how we shall all be gathered round him: please do not get excited too soon or alarmed by any prediction or rumour or any letter claiming to come from us, implying that the Day of the Lord has already arrived.

Gospel Acclamation – Luke 19:38, 2:14

Alleluia, alleluia!

Blessings on the King who comes, in the name of the Lord!

Peace in heaven and glory in the highest heavens!


Alternative Acclamation – John 3:16

Alleluia, alleluia!

God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son:  everyone who believes in him has eternal life.


The Gospel According to Luke 19.1 - 10 ©

Salvation Comes to the House of Zacchaeus

Jesus entered Jericho and was going through the town when a man whose name was Zacchaeus made his appearance: he was one of the senior tax collectors and a wealthy man. He was anxious to see what kind of man Jesus was, but he was too short and could not see him for the crowd. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree to catch a glimpse of Jesus who was to pass that way. When Jesus reached the spot he looked up and spoke to him: ‘Zacchaeus, come down. Hurry, because I must stay at your house today.’ And he hurried down and welcomed him joyfully. They all complained when they saw what was happening. ‘He has gone to stay at a sinner’s house’ they said. But Zacchaeus stood his ground and said to the Lord, ‘Look, sir, I am going to give half my property to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody I will pay him back four times the amount.’ And Jesus said to him, ‘Today salvation has come to this house, because this man too is a son of Abraham; for the Son of Man has come to seek out and save what was lost.’

31st Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C)

Sunday, September 8, 2019

A Homily - The Twenty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C)

First Reading – Wisdom 9:13-18 ©
Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 89(90):3-6, 12-14, 17 ©
Second Reading – Philemon 9-10, 12-17 ©
Gospel Acclamation – John 15:15
Alternative Acclamation – Palms 118:135
The Gospel According to Luke 14:25 - 33 ©


Listen to the sage.

The questions that are asked are rhetorical, who can know the intentions of God, or fathom the heavenly will?

The answer is not “no-one.”

God has endowed us with the gift of wisdom, the spirit of God dwells within us, and where God is present God is present fully.

Be mindful of this.

We must admit our limitations and speak to the fact that our ability to discern God’s intentions for creation is occluded by our material condition.

What we can say is this:

God has made us and the entire creation free from divine coercion.

God does not intervene in our lives and God has no specific intentions for us regarding any particular outcome for any particular event. God only desires that we love one another, God desires that we demonstrate our love for God through the caring we share with each other, that we walk humbly, exhibit mercy and seek justice all the days of our lives.

God intends bless everyone.


God is with us, yes, God has created in us, as a constitutive element of our being; a desire and a longing for God. This pull on us, it draws us to God, but God does not interject God’s self in our lives, does not interfere with our choices, God does not intervene in the consequences of those choices, God does not take sides either for us or against us.

When God is our refuge it is because we have made God so.

God is indeed the eternal, creator of all that is, we are little more than a speck of dust in the face of the infinite, but God knows us, and God loves us, even in our relative insignificance.

Be mindful!

We are, each of us individually, and taken as a whole; infinitely less than the infinite God.

God is never angry with us. We do not suffer because God desires to see us suffer, we do not sorrow because it please God to see us sorrowful. God’s justice is not distributed in that way.

God created us with the capacity for sorrow and suffering because they teach us something about the value of joy, and peace.

When we suffer or are sorrowful we cause suffering in others and sorrow in them. When we rejoice and are glad God is there with us; feeling what we feel, knowing what we know, understanding our experience just as we understand it ourselves.

Consider the words of the apostle:

Saint Paul teaches us two things with these words from his letters.

He demonstrates his personal commitment to the mission he accepted, to share the good news about the teachings of Jesus and the way of life Jesus commended to us, a commitment that led the apostle into captivity, and to his death.

The apostle desires that all people understand the transitory nature of the material world and his absolute faith in the promises of the divine that lead us to eternity.

The apostle also wants us to understand that any person can change their station, can elevate themselves from the circumstances of their birth, can go from being a salve to a leader in the church if they persevere in the way.

There are no obstacles that cannot be overcome, no threshold that cannot be crossed in the service of God.

Follow God’s command!

The greatest commandment is love, love is the whole of the law.

To love one another, to give of one’s self to another, there is no greater gift.

The love that we are called to is not the love we call desire, though to desire and be desired is an experience of great joy.

We are called to move past the love we have for family and friends, because to love in that way is only a short extension of the love we have for ourselves. We see ourselves in the faces of our mothers and fathers, we see our ambitions as tied to the ambitions of our friends. We are called to love in a greater capacity than that.

We are called to love to the point of selflessness, to love even those who are against us, to love our enemies, to forgive those who have hurt us and done us harm, to feed the stranger and protect them…to do so out of love.

Allow yourself to be moved by the living judgment of the living God; as the psalmist says. God’s rulings are filled with wonder and awe.

God; creator of the universe, God of light and warmth, our God is the God who loves, who teaches love.

Love God in return and demonstrate your love through the care you have for your sisters and brothers, your neighbor, and the stranger in your midst.

This is the great commandment, it is what the church has commissioned you to do.

Be mindful!

There are places in the scriptures where the words that are attributed to Jesus by the authors of the text are out of keeping with the character the reader has come to know about him.

Today’s reading from Luke is one of those places.

It is jarring to hear the voice of Jesus speaking to us about the necessity of hate, of hating your father, your mother, your wife, your children, your sibling and even yourself. It is jarring because Jesus is the man who; more than any other prophet speaks to us of love.

Love God, the creator of the universe; Love God with all your strength, and all your heart and all your mind, love your neighbor as yourself, this is the whole of the law.

It is love and not hate that Jesus calls us to.

We are created in love, and called by the loving voice of God to be good and do good in the world.

We are called to be merciful, to be advocates, to be compassionate.

As Saint Paul said; if we speak in the tongues of angels, and are not loving, then our voices are clanging cymbals, dissonant and incoherent, and in consideration of these virtues: trust, hope, and love, the greatest of them is love, because it is the root of the other two.

It is out of keeping with the teaching of Jesus to dissuade us from a course of action simply because we will be publicly ridiculed if we fail. It is out of step with the wisdom of Jesus to compare the work of his disciples to the machinations of kings and their generals with their armies. It is out of keeping with the teachings of Jesus to make the work of the church a march of conquest rather than a way of conversion.

This passage represents the thoughts and the fears of the church in the second or third generation. It represents the church in a time of persecution, but also a time of building. They are the feelings of a community trying to establish itself, while looking to remove the weak and the ill prepared from their congregation.

This is the wisdom of human being, not the wisdom of the divine, just as the sage had noted. These are the hopes and fears of men, of men occluded by their material condition.

Be mindful.

When we strip it down to its essence the advice is not bad. It is a call for total commitment. It says to the church, be ready to complete what you have started, and be ready to give everything you have, including your life for the work you believe in. But it is missing the final thought: if you fail (and you will fail) you will still be loved by God.

First Reading – Wisdom 9:13-18 ©

Who can divine the will of God?

What man indeed can know the intentions of God?

Who can divine the will of the Lord?

The reasonings of mortals are unsure and our intentions unstable; for a perishable body presses down the soul, and this tent of clay weighs down the teeming mind.

It is hard enough for us to work out what is on earth, laborious to know what lies within our reach; who, then, can discover what is in the heavens?

As for your intention, who could have learnt it, had you not granted Wisdom and sent your holy spirit from above?

Thus have the paths of those on earth been straightened and men been taught what pleases you, and saved, by Wisdom.

Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 89(90):3-6, 12-14, 17 ©

O Lord, you have been our refuge from one generation to the next.

You turn men back to dust
  and say: ‘Go back, sons of men.’
To your eyes a thousand years
  are like yesterday, come and gone,
  no more than a watch in the night.

O Lord, you have been our refuge from one generation to the next.

You sweep men away like a dream,
  like the grass which springs up in the morning.
In the morning it springs up and flowers:
  by evening it withers and fades.

O Lord, you have been our refuge from one generation to the next.

Make us know the shortness of our life
  that we may gain wisdom of heart.
Lord, relent! Is your anger for ever?
  Show pity to your servants.

O Lord, you have been our refuge from one generation to the next.

In the morning, fill us with your love;
  we shall exult and rejoice all our days.
Let the favour of the Lord be upon us:
  give success to the work of our hands.

O Lord, you have been our refuge from one generation to the next.

Second Reading – Philemon 9-10, 12-17 ©

He is a Slave No Longer, but a Dear Brother in the Lord

This is Paul writing, an old man now and, what is more, still a prisoner of Christ Jesus. I am appealing to you for a child of mine, whose father I became while wearing these chains: I mean Onesimus. I am sending him back to you, and with him – I could say – a part of my own self. I should have liked to keep him with me; he could have been a substitute for you, to help me while I am in the chains that the Good News has brought me. However, I did not want to do anything without your consent; it would have been forcing your act of kindness, which should be spontaneous. I know you have been deprived of Onesimus for a time, but it was only so that you could have him back for ever, not as a slave any more, but something much better than a slave, a dear brother; especially dear to me, but how much more to you, as a blood-brother as well as a brother in the Lord. So if all that we have in common means anything to you, welcome him as you would me.

Gospel Acclamation – John 15:15

Alleluia, alleluia!

I call you friends, says the Lord,
because I have made known to you
everything I have learnt from my Father.


Alternative Acclamation – Palms 118:135

Alleluia, alleluia!

Let your face shine on your servant;
and teach me your decrees.


The Gospel According to Luke 14:25 - 33 ©

Anyone Who Does Not Carry His Cross and Follow Me Cannot Be My Disciple

Great crowds accompanied Jesus on his way and he turned and spoke to them. ‘If any man comes to me without hating his father, mother, wife, children, brothers, sisters, yes and his own life too, he cannot be my disciple. Anyone who does not carry his cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.

‘And indeed, which of you here, intending to build a tower, would not first sit down and work out the cost to see if he had enough to complete it? Otherwise, if he laid the foundation and then found himself unable to finish the work, the onlookers would all start making fun of him and saying, “Here is a man who started to build and was unable to finish.” Or again, what king marching to war against another king would not first sit down and consider whether with ten thousand men he could stand up to the other who advanced against him with twenty thousand? If not, then while the other king was still a long way off, he would send envoys to sue for peace. So in the same way, none of you can be my disciple unless he gives up all his possessions.’

23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C)