On this 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time, we call to mind the profoundFr. Dominic Toan Tran, Pastor
teachings presented in today’s readings. In the Second Reading, St. Paul speaks
of how he and his companions shared the Word of God with the Thessalonians.
Their approach was not one of mere proclamation but rather rooted in genuine
affection and care. St. Paul compares their ministry to that of a nursing mother
caring for her children, emphasizing the tenderness and selflessness with which
they shared not only the message of God but also their very selves.
In expressing their gratitude to God, St. Paul acknowledges that the
Thessalonians received the Word of God as it truly is, not merely as a human
word, but as God’s living and transformative Word. This Word, accepted and
embraced, now works within those who believe, shaping their hearts and guiding
their lives. How about us? Do we allow the Word of God to shape and guide us?
In the Gospel, the Pharisees approach Jesus with a seemingly innocent
question about the greatest commandment of the Law. However, their motives
were far from sincere. They sought to disconcert Jesus, and catch Him in a
moment of error or confusion. Yet, Jesus responds with unwavering clarity,
revealing the essence of true love and the commandments. He teaches that the
greatest commandment is to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind and
further emphasizes that the second commandment is to love our neighbor as
ourselves. Not only does Jesus provides a direct answer to their question but
also challenges the Pharisees’ understanding of love. He invites them and us to
reflect deeply on the true meaning and implications of the commandment of love.
As we celebrate the Feast of All Saints this coming Wednesday, we are
reminded of the countless men and women who have gone before us, such as
Saint Mother Teresa of Calcutta and Pope Saint St. John Paull II, bearing
witness to their faith in the face of difficulties, opposition, and even persecution.
They stood firm in their commitment to God and their love for others. Their lives
inspire us to persevere in faith and love, even when we may experience sorrow
for doing what is right.
Dear brothers and sisters, in times of struggle let us remember that we are
not alone. The Word of God is at work within us, guiding and transforming us.
Through prayer, the sacraments, and a deepening relationship with God, we can
find the strength and courage to face any trials that come our way. Inspired by
the saints who have gone before us, imitating their selfless love, unwavering
faith, and steadfast commitment to God, may our perseverance in faith and love
also bear witness to the transformative power of the Word of God in our lives and