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JULY 12. Ord Time B. Wk.15 Mon. Mt.10. 34-11.1

Jesus instructed the Twelve as follows: ‘Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth: it is not peace I have come to bring, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. A man’s enemies will be those of his own household.


‘Anyone who prefers father or mother to me is not worthy of me. Anyone who prefers son or daughter to me is not worthy of me. Anyone who does not take his cross and follow in my footsteps is not worthy of me. Anyone who finds his life will lose it; anyone who loses his life for my sake will find it.


‘Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me; and those who welcome me welcome the one who sent me.


‘Anyone who welcomes a prophet will have a prophet’s reward; and anyone who welcomes a holy man will have a holy man’s reward.


‘If anyone gives so much as a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is a disciple, then I tell you solemnly, he will most certainly not lose his reward.’


When Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples he moved on from there to teach and preach in their towns.


While multiple lessons can be taken from this Gospel, the primary one is that of our priorities in life! And where this is clearly articulated is when Christ says; - ‘Anyone who prefers father or mother to me is not worthy of me. Anyone who prefers son or daughter to me is not worthy of me. Anyone who does not take his cross and follow in my footsteps is not worthy of me.’


This can be legitimately interpreted as a warning that; - not only no thing or circumstance is to be given precedence over serving and obeying Christ; - but also nobody; - and that includes family and friends! He repeats the same message when he says; - “Do not suppose I have come to bring peace to the earth; - it is not peace I have come to bring, but a sword!”


It is very easy to “overlook” or “forget” a primary responsibility of Christians is to not only obey Christ; - but also to bear witness to his teachings in both our words and actions; - and where there can often be conflict over doing this is among those closest to us; - as Christ seems to be saying by the words; - “A man’s enemies will be those of his own household!”


And as if to make the point even more strongly he goes on; - ‘Anyone who prefers father or mother to me is not worthy of me; - Anyone who prefers son or daughter to me is not worthy of me; - Anyone who does not take his cross and follow in my footsteps is not worthy of me; - Anyone who finds his life will lose it; anyone who loses his life for my sake will find it!”


What Christ is doing here is giving a strong warning our Faith is not something to be treated casually, and his teachings cannot be varied or “bent” to suit one’s circumstances; - a message that is certainly relevant in today’s “modern” world where many would have us accept actions such as homosexuality, euthanasia, abortion, or even deny the real presence in the Eucharist?


The second half of the reading then teaches the Church is to be seen as representing Christ himself; - another teaching easily ‘overlooked’ because of its implications? Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me; and those who welcome me welcome the one who sent me!”


Gospel Acclamation Mt5:10


Alleluia, alleluia!

Happy are they who suffer persecution for justice’ sake:

the kingdom of heaven is theirs.

Alleluia!




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