Monday November 27, 2023

Good News Reflections:
Making scripture meaningful to your daily life
by Terry Modica


“If a gift we give or a good deed we do is easy and comfortable, it’s not a sacrifice.”


Good News Reflection for:

Monday of the 34th Week in Ordinary Time
November 27, 2023

Today’s Prayer:

Beloved Father: Give me a helpful and generous heart, able to give away whatever I need most, because of love for You and my brothers and sisters. Amen.

SaintsSubscribe to Today’s Saint Quote & Prayer:
gnm.org/SaintQuotes/

Today’s Readings:

Daniel 1:1-6, 8-20
Daniel 3:52-56
Luke 21:1-4
bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/112723.cfm
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:
bible.usccb.org/podcasts/audio/daily-mass-reading-podcast-november-27-2023

The widow’s mighty sacrifice / Putting our faith into social justice

[ Listen to the podcast of this reflection ]

Today’s Gospel reading challenges us to examine how generously we help the ministries of the Church by contributing financially to the treasury of the Church. When our income isn’t enough to pay for everything that we wish we could buy for ourselves, the widow’s mighty sacrifice is not pleasing to look at. We can appreciate why Jesus praised the widow, but it’s hard to feel safe and secure with the idea of “offering our whole livelihood”.

God’s not really saying that you and I should turn over our entire paychecks to the church. Elsewhere in scripture he makes it clear that he asks for just ten percent of it. “Just” ten percent? Even that seems like way too much, doesn’t it!

And thus we cause others to suffer. Our parishes and Good News Ministries and other charities don’t have enough financial resources to do all the ministering that could be done and needs to be done.

Perhaps the widow whom Jesus praised felt free to share the little she had because, in her poverty, her eyes were not set on making big purchases. Economic problems in our world are rooted not just in corporate greed but also in the accumulation of a lot of individual debts that never should have been considered. Many families depend on two incomes for the sake of buying more, more, more.

This lifestyle of overspending is part of a culture that sinfully neglects the needs of the poor. As Catholics, we take seriously the Church’s teachings on social justice. We know we need to become more like Christ, oriented toward making sacrifices for the sake of others.

We can adopt the same attitude as the widow whom Jesus praised. She made an offering that wasn’t easy. In so doing, she sacrificed not only coins but her very self. If a gift we give or a good deed we do is easy and comfortable, it’s not a sacrifice. Most of us donate from our surplus and think that’s a sacrifice! This is why your parish and other charitable organizations (including Good News Ministries) cannot help all those who would benefit from their services.

And (some readers will find this unbelievable until they honestly look into the facts) it’s the reason why climate change is occurring — our personal comforts are indeed interfering with the Earth’s natural processes, and this is already devastating the lives of many who are poor and vulnerable. Pope Francis wrote about this in Laudate Si (here’s a link to it: vatican.va/content/francesco/…enciclica-laudato-si.html).

Let’s put our faith into action. What happened to the widow after she went home? Did she starve? Wait a minute. Do we believe that God would praise her for making such a huge act of love and then crush her as if her good deed had been foolish? I know from personal experience how scary this level of trust can be and how faith-building it can be. Join me in the spiritual growth that comes from placing sacrificial trust in God’s goodness!

Please remember the needs and staff of Good News Ministries. Visit gnm.org/donate to join us in spreading Christ’s love and peace and the Holy Spirit of Truth throughout the world. If you cannot donate money, please see other ways you can make a difference: gnm.org/support-beyond-donations/ or become a Good News Missionary without leaving home!

2023 by Terry A. Modica

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T.beaudry
T.beaudry
Guest
November 26, 2023 6:39 pm

One true story you might want to share is about a businessman who gave his life to the Lord, and told Him, I promise to give You 10 % of all that I earn”..when later, he saw that God had honored his giving, he told the Lord, ” ill now give You 20% of all that I earn.” His business began to prosper even more. He began giving 30%. As he increased his giving, God provided more and more in miraculous ways, and by the end of his life, he was gladly giving 90% of all he made and was able to live wonderfully and miraculously on 10% of his income, and his family never went without, and they were able to experience the great joy of every penny of what they gave make an eternal impact for souls and for the Kingdom. This is a true story, I wish I remembered his name, his story was written in book