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Scripture Reflections - September 20
25th Sunday of Ordinary Time

READINGS
Isaiah 55: 6-9
Phil 1:20c-24, 27a
Matt 201-16a

Archives Msgr Paul E. Whitmore
Msgr. Paul E. Whitmore

No one expected six months ago that the COVID-19 pandemic would still be in full swing. The feelings of loss and confusion are everywhere. Even though our churches are open for Masses, the regulations are so strict that many still prefer watching Mass on the internet. We have no idea when this will be over. We have learned a lot about social distancing and the wearing of masks.

The readings this week are a consolation and reasons for hope. They show us how very near God is to us and how intimate He is. In the first reading from Isaiah, we are assured of God’s constant mercy, even though we are so often unforgiving to one another, and how vindictive we tend to be. God’s ways are not our ways. There is such reason for hope when we realize how very close God is always. This gives us strong reasons for gratitude.

In the second reading from St. Paul to the Philippians, we feel with Paul the desire to be free from this world so that we may be with Christ risen.

The Gospel can be difficult. We feel for those who worked the whole day yet were paid the same wage as those who worked but an hour. Yet we realize that God is showing generosity to all the workers. God’s ways are very different from our own, but He still treats everyone with equality. The kingdom of heaven is so very like this.

Most people resist change. These days have shaken us to the core. There are so many who are suffering grief at the loss of loved ones. Others have suffered greatly from the loss of employment. But in all the experience, we highly respect those people who put their lives at risk for the sake of the community – hospital nurses, doctors, to mention only a few. Their example bolsters our morale. The most consolations come, however, from the power of the Gospel, which shows us how we are to react in all this. The power of God’s Word and His promises are the ultimate reality. God is still in charge of our world.

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