Pastor's Desk: 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time
In place of the Pastor’s Desk this week, we include the following extract from Intercom Magazine:
The Deep End - Peace on Earth?
It’s a long way from the angels who heralded the birth of Jesus by singing ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace to men who enjoy his favour’. We usually associate Jesus more with peace than division. When Jesus later appears to the disciples after his resurrection, his first words are ‘Peace be with you’. So why all this talk of division? Did Jesus really want to split families against each other?
At the time that Luke was writing his Gospel, the early Christian community was experiencing division. Households were indeed divided over whether to believe in this new Good News. It is not that Jesus was in favour of division; rather, not everyone was ready to accept his teachings and to acclaim him as Messiah.
‘I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were blazing already!’ Jesus does not want division; he wants the flame of faith to burn strong and to spread across the earth. How he wishes it were blazing today; how he wishes we were so on fire with the Good News that the flame would pass on to those we meet. We are familiar with the saying ‘It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness’. Pass on the flame of faith. The flame may burn bright or burn out, or the embers might be kept gently glowing for future reference. If your faith is causing debate and division, you are probably doing something right!