Catholic Mass Readings and Reflection February 26, 2024


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R/. O Lord, do not treat us according to our sins.

V/. Glory and praise to you, O Christ

R/. Glory and praise to you, O Christ

V/. Your words, Lord, are spirit and life, you have the words of eternal life.

R/. Glory and praise to you, O Christ.

At that time: Jesus said to his disciples, “Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”

1.      All seek models and we need them. But the question is whether they are right and truly imitable or wrong and detestable. The irony in society is often wrong models are more followed. Models are often associated with excellence in some fields and not necessarily with virtue and character. In other words, the models are not always virtuous or character-people.

2.      Thus, we live in a context where there is the influence of wrong models and disconnection between models and virtue. In such a context, today Jesus is proposing to us the greatest and best model to follow.

3.      That is God the Father Himself. Jesus specifies also what we must imitate. It is mercy. He admonishes us, “Be merciful as your heavenly Father is merciful”. The first reading from Daniel also highlights this, saying, “To the Lord, our God belong mercy and forgiveness”.

4.      Jesus further clarifies what this mercy is. It is a mercy that does not judge, does not condemn. He keeps covenant and steadfast love. He only chastises the people when they go astray. He is never keen on destroying them. He is enormously patient and so gives ample opportunities to His people to repent and return to Him. He is ever generous in His forgiveness and reward.

5.      If God is so merciful and forgiving, then what is our duty? The first reading is amply clear about these details. First of all, realize our sinfulness and unworthiness; repent for not obeying the voice of the Lord; for not listening to His servants, the prophets; for rebelling and turning aside from His commandments and rules; for not walking in His laws; for doing wrong and acting wickedly. Realizing and repenting for our infidelity, then seeking His forgiveness.

6.      Secondly, live what you experience; give what you receive. If we are not judged and condemned, and if we do not want to be judged and condemned, then do not judge and condemn others. If we are forgiven, then forgive others as well. If God and others are so generous toward us, then we too must be generous to them.

Catholic Leaf is website that provides Sundays and Weekdays catholic reflections. Please use catholic leaf as a tool for preparing your Homily.