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Sunday, 30 October 2011

31ST SUNDAY OF THE YEAR A: REFLECTION

The priest is a minister of God, called by God to minister to the people of God. By virtue of our baptism, we become priests sharing in the tripartite offices of Christ as priests, prophets and kings. This is the common priesthood of all the faithful. From this common priesthood, God still calls certain men in a special way to take up wholly and entirely the office of Christ’s priesthood as ministerial priests through the sacrament of Holy Orders.

Today, in the first reading, God rebukes the priests of the Old Testament because of their infidelity to their priestly ministry. They weren’t ministering effectively to the people of God and their sacrifices were made with contempt such that God had to reject them.

In the second reading, we see a contrast to the first. St Paul unlike the priests in the first reading maintained a good ministry with the people of God. A ministry punctuated by cordial relationship and mutual sharing. They never lived at the expense of the other and each party strove to live to their expectations. St Paul really practiced what he preached and the people practiced what they heard.

In the Gospel reading, Jesus also scorns the bad priests represented in the Scribes and Pharisees who were the religious leaders at that time. He recognized their authority but warned the people never to follow after their examples but to listen to their exhortation.

Every authority comes from God and God has appointed us as priests: common and ministerial priests. How do we exercise our priestly ministry? Is it like the priests in the first reading and the Scribes and Pharisees in the gospel reading or is it like St Paul in the second reading? How do we exercise our priestly authority on others? The priesthood is a vocation to love and service. Have we really loved those we are serving just as St Paul did by fulfilling our duties to them and by not being a burden to them or do we place heavy burdens on them as we saw in the gospel. 

Jesus does not want us to be proud because we represent him to the people. He wants us to profess and practice our faith in sincere humility because humility is a necessary virtue for an effective ministry.

Moreso, for those who persist in sin because some religious leaders or church authorities have not been faithful to their calling, Jesus advices us never to be influenced by them but to remain steadfast in our good deeds because he will give the final judgement. God loves you.

2 comments:

  1. Joe (Lagos)11:59 am

    Thanks for sharing your reflection with us. It is a good inspiration.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anonymous12:03 pm

    I was just referred to your blog by a friend after mass here in the US. I learnt you are a Nigerian Seminarian. Thats good keep it up and I hope you become a good priest!

    ReplyDelete

DISCLAIMER: Comments, remarks and observations are allowed to enable my readers freely express their opinions concerning issues raised in this post. However, while I recommend the observance of the rule of courtesy for every comment, comments on this post do not in any way express my personal opinion. They are strictly the opinions of those who made the comments.

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