FR. GERALD MUSA HOMILY FOR SATURDAY OF THE 22ND WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME CYCLE II
THEME: MERCY NOT SACRIFICE
BY: FR GERALD M. MUSA
HOMILY FOR SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 3 2022
Today, many of us are good at keeping laws but are very poor at showing mercy. When we keep laws and lack the milk of human kindness, we reduce ourselves to noisy gongs. Traditional Jewish setting allows anyone desperately hungry to pinch a crop from a neighbour’s farm to eat, but never to use a sickle, take away, or put it in a bag or sack (Deuteronomy 23:26). The disciples of Jesus were seriously hungry and plucked some ears of corn to eat for survival. The Pharisees frowned and raised eyebrows because the disciples contravened the law of the Sabbath which states that the sabbath day is a work-free day. The Pharisees were so concerned about excessive conformity to the law of the Sabbath and were not sensitive to the survival of the disciples. Jesus approaches the law with greater wisdom and taught his disciples the ultimate purpose of the law, which is love. He bluntly said, “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath” (Matthew 12:7). Sabbath is a special day of the Lord and should be celebrated with love and in the spirit of the law, not just by the letters of the law. The law was made for man and not man for the law and so, the urgent human need comes before the law. What is the use of strict observance of the law and pious religious exercises if there is no mercy, no charity, or love?