Pastor's Desk: Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time /C

Posted 23rd February 2019 in Pastor's Desk

Pastor’s Desk 24th February 2019 - Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time/C

confirmation1Around this time each year we have a lot of final preparations for the Sacrament of Confirmation in the weeks ahead. The candidates are instructed in the meaning of the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit which they will receive on Confirmation Day. They are helped to understand the important role that the Holy Spirit plays in helping them to always make the right choices that lead us to God, and avoid the wrong ones which break our relationship with him and with one another.

Our readings today are all linked together by one main theme: the true power of Christian love, when it is practised in unconditional forgiveness. They also teach us about the right and wrong choices we all make. In our first reading we see how David made the right choice by respecting the King and forgiving him his failures. St. Paul refers in the second reading to Jesus’ correct choice of fulfilling his Father’s saving plan.

Today’s gospel challenges us to love our enemies and do good to those who hate us. If someone should strike us Jesus tells us to offer the other cheek. Here he is simply challenging us not to seek vengeance but rather to love everyone, even our enemies. It is of course morally legitimate to defend ourselves from an unjust aggressor. Jesus tells us to forgive others as we have been forgiven so that others will know we are his disciples.

We can’t attain this level of love and forgiveness by ourselves. We need the power of God working through us by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit within us.

Fr. Gerry