August 19, 2019
(St. John Eudes, Priest)
A young man approached Jesus and said, “Teacher, what good must I do to gain eternal life?” He answered him, “Why do you ask me about the good? There is only One who is good. If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.” . . . Jesus said to him, “If you wish to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” Mt_19:16-22
There were two young men. The one in this Gospel story refused to follow Jesus because he was just too attached to all of his possessions. (Actually they are called possessions, because THEY possessed him, and not the other way around!)
The second young man was named Francis. And Francis roamed the earth 12-centuries after Jesus told this story. But Francis, as opposed to the young man of the story, truly took the story to heart. He eliminated everything in his worldly life, giving it to the poor, and then devoted his life to Jesus in building the Church, building churches, and healing the sick. Eight hundred years later (today) people who have taken to heart the life and workings of Francis of Assisi, whose life was modeled after Jesus, call themselves Franciscans. And Franciscans exist in most every denomination of Christianity and among varying orders and charisms, even in the Catholic Church. They include priests, men and women, secular and religious.
If we, beloved, can just work on giving one thing away every day in our lives, whether it’s a material object or a physical or mental activity – to the poor, in the Name of Jesus, we will be working towards that perfect life Jesus told of in the story of the rich young man! And then, come and join us Franciscans, who are working towards the same perfect goal!
Pax et Bonem
Peace and all Good
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