We live in a country which has religious freedoms; this has not always been the case. We can practice our faith without restraint, and in some ways, this is a good thing. However, it can be seen by some as being something like a pastime or a hobby, ‘It’s what I do on a Sunday’. The message in today’s Scriptures is quite the opposite. Our faith has to be intrinsic in everything we do.

In the first reading we hear the call of Elijah to Elisha as his successor, there is a sense of urgency here; Elijah presses home the call and the response is immediate.

St Paul urges us through his letter to the Galatians to avoid self-indulgence, we are called to love our neighbour, he warns against snapping at each other; this in fact is the work of the enemy. The enemy looks to divide, self-indulgence is the opposite of living in The Spirit and is destructive for the community. Think about the times when we have had good intentions, perhaps we were going to phone someone who is lonely or visit someone who is sick, but we put off the good intention. We need to ask ourselves, what did I do instead? Who did I serve instead? Was it someone in greater need or was I distracted by doing something for myself?

As with the first reading, there is a real sense of urgency in the Gospel this week, Jesus knows how urgent our response must be to our call to discipleship. Jesus doesn’t want us to wait until the end of this term, or until after the summer holidays, or until the moment feels right. For Jesus the right moment is now.

On Friday the Supreme Court in the USA made a judgement which will protect the right to life of unborn babies across the USA. This judgement is already being challenged by many who call themselves pro-choice. They will inevitably attack the views of the Church. The gospel today gives us a choice, to follow Christ or to follow the ways of the world. As it says in the letter to the Romans “Do not model your behaviour on the contemporary world, but let the renewing of your minds transform you, so that you may discern for yourselves what is the will of God – what is good and acceptable and mature.” [Romans 12:2]. As Christians we are called to live out our faith in everything we do, in the choices we make, in the friends we keep in touch with, in how we spend our leisure time. We may not always get things right; but we know that when we fail we can call on God’s forgiveness and He is a loving merciful Father who wants what is best for us.

Further Reading

The Catechism of the Catholic Church

CCC 587: Jesus’ ascent to Jerusalem for his death and Resurrection
CCC 2052-2055: Master, what must I do …?
CCC 1036, 1816: the urgency of discipleship

Please keep in your prayers this week

  • The Ukrainian and Russian people, may they be able to live in peace.
  • Those who are sick, those recovering from surgery, those who are dying, the recently deceased and those who mourn.
  • The Year of the Eucharist, that this will lead to a fresh outpouring of love by the people of God for the Body and Blood of Christ.
  • Our Confirmation candidates at Holy Ghost Parish, as they celebrate their Confirmation this weekend.
  • Fr Chris Whelan who is sick and Fr John & Fr Dominic who are having to make changes to support St Joseph’s at this time.
  • Gwyneth, Beatrice, Giorgios, Logan and Percephone who will be Baptised in Holy Ghost Parish and Nathan who will be Baptised in St Michael’s Parish this weekend.