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March 10, 2014
MONDAY OF THE FIRST WEEK OF LENT
Are you a sheep or a goat? It’s an interesting question. In the first reading God lays out a list of auxiliary rules to the Ten Commandments that he had given to Moses earlier in Exodus 20. Now God “fleshes” them out for all of Israel, all humanity, in and through the words of the Word, Jesus, and sums up these rules within the context of the last five of the Ten into one great command (see Mt 22:36-40), love thy neighbor as thyself.
Who is my neighbor? Everyone; especially the least of these: the destitute, the lame, the blind, the poor, the imprisoned, and the outcasts. Jesus lays this out plainly in the Gospel: our neighbors, and through them himself, are all around us and everywhere we go. Jesus beckons us to go out of our way to serve our neighbor, to lower ourselves as he did (see Mt 20:20-28, Mk 10:35-45, Jn 13:4-20), and to treat them with the dignity and respect that they deserve as children of God.
Heaven is unattainable without them, without approaching our neighbors through the innocence and openness of the eyes of a child (see Mt 18:54-6, etc.). During this Lenten season, ask yourself, what am I doing for the least of these? What am I giving of myself, beyond simple sweets or favorite pastimes, for them? Am welcoming the stranger, clothing the naked, caring for the sick, feeding the hungry, or visiting and caring for the infirmed or imprisoned?
- Am I a sheep or a goat?
Class of 2010 and 2015
PhD Student, Aerospace Engineering
St. Mary’s Catholic Center will post a daily reflection from a student, former student, or staff member every day of Lent. We have compiled these reflections into a handout, given to our students on Ash Wednesday. (119)
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