I don’t think Jesus can be more straightforward than he is in today’s Gospel regarding how to be a Christian.
“You shall love the Lord, your God,
with all your heart,
with all your being,
with all your strength,
and with all your mind,
and your neighbor as yourself.”
How much more simpler can it be? Of course for too many, it seems to be complicated. Or maybe too many Christians simply ignore these words altogether, especially the neighbor part. Not many would ask the follow-up question that the scholar of the law asked, “Who is my neighbor.” We all know who Jesus is talking about, but too many do not want to be reminded of the stinging words of Jesus that follow.
For the Jewish people hearing Jesus’ story about the Samaritan, would be scandalized. Neighbor to them was their own tribe. Those “unclean,” or otherwise different or foreign, were not considered neighbors and therefore undeserving of the love Jesus is explaining.
This radical stance by Jesus toward every person, would not win him many fans today. Sadly, Jesus needs to explain to us again and again who our neighbor is….everyone, no matter what.
As you can see the demolition of the north two rooms of the church is taking place. I think it goes without saying that everyone needs to stay out of the area. The risks of injury are too great, not to mention the liability has for any injury in that area.
All current Eucharistic Ministers and all those who are interested in becoming one please stay after Mass today for a brief meeting. If you came last weekend, there is no need to stay.
Rev. James Kirby