7, మార్చి 2023, మంగళవారం

 

Wednesday of the Second Week of Lent

Jeremiah 18:18-20

Gospel Matthew 20:17-28

Sanctify them by the TRUTH, Your Word is the TRUTH ( John 17:17)

The TRUTH will set you free. (John 8:22)

Dear Brothers and sisters in christ jesus, it is a known fact that today we are fed with lies, take for any media outlets we will find a different world altogether. But this is wrapped in a beautiful and colourful sheet. Truth is presented as lies and Lies are truth. This is done for the vested interests of some individuals and institutions. The fact is that truth is hijacked and lies are fed with biassed agenda and vain hopes and manipulate us.

In the first reading,  when Jeremiah conveyed to the people of God’s message, they did not take it well. They considered it uncomfortable and painful, and he is seen as a trouble maker. They were not ready to accept the message.

The message was that they were disobedient,and unfaithful and rejected God's ways and walked in the wrong direction.

However, they were happy with the message because they made themselves comfortable with lies, false ways, false messages that’s why they were not ready to listen instead they thought of getting him out of their way. They were hijacked by lies and want to go their own way. So plotted against him, even to kill him.

He spoke the Truth from God, declared the message of God, defended them from the wrath of God. all that he wanted for good for them. But the consequence was different for speaking Truth. He fulfilled his calling, speaking truth and good of the people.

In the Gospel, he mentions again about the truth of his passion, suffering, death and resurrection.  He will be mocked,  dragged and rejected.  But the disciples had different understanding of Messiah, they thought of Political Messiah. That’s why the mother of James and John comes to ask for privileged seats at His right  and left side. Even other disciples too were fueled with anger and jealousy about this tactic. 

But he makes them aware about the Truth of following Him, that they have to carry the cross, endure the pain and suffering and be ready to lay down one's life for the Truth. They have to resemble Him in every way. Jesus said “ I am the Truth, the Way and the Life”

Dear friends, therefore when we look at society or the world in general it does not want to face the Truth, in fact it wants to silence the Truth and people who speak Truth. We witness it everyday.

Instead some individuals and institutions want to replace it with their propaganda and agenda, manipulating and dominating others. And also feeding with lies, showing complacency and compromisation in everything thus leading in the wrong direction. Sometimes we do not know this but it is done in a subtle way.

Though we may face hurdles, though people are against us plotting our destruction, we are invited to empower people with Truth, not with pleasing , sugar coated words which leads people away from reality.

It's a reminder that we need to be liberated from the clutches of manipulative and false notions and be  ambassadors of Truth. Truth hurts but it will set free.

So stand fast with your loins girded in truth, clothed with righteousness as a breastplate (Ephesians 6:14)

Truthful lips endure forever, the lying tongue, for only a moment.(Proverbs 12:19)

 FR. JAYARAJU MANTHENA OCD

 

 

 

Tuesday of the Second Week of Lent

Isaiah 1:10, 16-20

Mt 23:1-12

Hypocrisy ➡️ Honesty

 

Dear Brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus, the readings of the day strictly warns us of  the false attitude we develop under the guise of religiosity (devotion) and goodness.

 

In the first reading, Prophet Isaiah addresses the people, and the leaders as princes of Sodom and people of Gomorrah, very strong words to call them like that. But God saw them in a similar situation, evil in their actions and rebelling, disobeying and sinning against God. At the same time they were behaving and doing all kinds of religious activities presuming that God would be pleased. However, the prophet clearly states God does not accept this dichotomy between their external disposition through offerings and internal evil nature. They are full of dishonesty and hypocrisy.

Similarly in the Gospel too, Jesus points out the hypocrisy of Pharisees in general but it can be applied to all of us, the elders, the leaders.

Jesus states that

     They don’t practise what they preach

     They do superficially in order to attract admiration and appreciation.

 

They act as the authority in relation to spiritual and religious matters, they are happy to lay burdens on others but not ready to help. They are happy to preach extensively from one end to another but not ready to internalise the practicality of it.

In general, we know with regard to certain authorities we expect them to be aware of their field and we are happy to listen.  the doctor about things medical, the lawyer about things legal, the priest about things spiritual, the parent about family matters.

Unfortunately there is even in our society and community  today a lot of dishonesty and hypocrisy in people’s attitude and there is a void of integrity and honesty in us, also in the authoritative figures in their fields. People are after fancy admiration than factual fostering of one's life.

God indeed condemns this behaviour and warns strictly but his desire is not to punish unless we deserve. Instead He calls upon us for a change of heart, change of behaviour, repentance.

Therefore the Lord says “Wash yourselves clean! Come now, let us set things right”.(Isaiah 1:16) He wishes to make our life wholesome again, and blessed abundantly.

And how are we to wash ourselves clean and make things right. Is it just by increasing our prayers, our offerings and making a repentant prayer or just confession alone.

In addition to that,

    Cease to do evil and impure things

    Depart from all the occasions of temptations, doing wrong.

    And justice to be our aim

    redress the wrong done to others, that is to rectify or repay ( like Zacchaues)

    Hear the orphan and defend the widow, in other words take care of the needy, weak and vulnerable or neglected people around.

Therefore every authoritative behaviour clubbed with arrogance and dominance and presuming the superior needs to be avoided.  Rather through empowering and enabling others one can wash clean. One can free from the clutches of the fantasy world, false honesty, admiration and appreciation.

 

As a result there is hope of being accepted by God and being blessed accordingly.

God blesses us when we present ourselves honestly before with all our mistakes, imperfection but if we try to act, disguise, refuse and resist and crave for the title and authority. God does not accept, He is not pleased with us.  So let this lent be  a time to turn from hypocrisy to honesty.

 

“Though your sins are like scarlet, they may become white as snow; Though they be crimson red, they may become white as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18)

whoever humbles himself will be exalted."( Matthew 223:12)

Tuesday of the Second Week of Lent

Isaiah 1:10, 16-20

Mt 23:1-12

Hypocrisy ➡️ Honesty

 

Dear Brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus, the readings of the day strictly warns us of  the false attitude we develop under the guise of religiosity (devotion) and goodness.

 

In the first reading, Prophet Isaiah addresses the people, and the leaders as princes of Sodom and people of Gomorrah, very strong words to call them like that. But God saw them in a similar situation, evil in their actions and rebelling, disobeying and sinning against God. At the same time they were behaving and doing all kinds of religious activities presuming that God would be pleased. However, the prophet clearly states God does not accept this dichotomy between their external disposition through offerings and internal evil nature. They are full of dishonesty and hypocrisy.

Similarly in the Gospel too, Jesus points out the hypocrisy of Pharisees in general but it can be applied to all of us, the elders, the leaders.

Jesus states that

     They don’t practise what they preach

     They do superficially in order to attract admiration and appreciation.

 

They act as the authority in relation to spiritual and religious matters, they are happy to lay burdens on others but not ready to help. They are happy to preach extensively from one end to another but not ready to internalise the practicality of it.

In general, we know with regard to certain authorities we expect them to be aware of their field and we are happy to listen.  the doctor about things medical, the lawyer about things legal, the priest about things spiritual, the parent about family matters.

Unfortunately there is even in our society and community  today a lot of dishonesty and hypocrisy in people’s attitude and there is a void of integrity and honesty in us, also in the authoritative figures in their fields. People are after fancy admiration than factual fostering of one's life.

God indeed condemns this behaviour and warns strictly but his desire is not to punish unless we deserve. Instead He calls upon us for a change of heart, change of behaviour, repentance.

Therefore the Lord says “Wash yourselves clean! Come now, let us set things right”.(Isaiah 1:16) He wishes to make our life wholesome again, and blessed abundantly.

And how are we to wash ourselves clean and make things right. Is it just by increasing our prayers, our offerings and making a repentant prayer or just confession alone.

In addition to that,

    Cease to do evil and impure things

    Depart from all the occasions of temptations, doing wrong.

    And justice to be our aim

    redress the wrong done to others, that is to rectify or repay ( like Zacchaues)

    Hear the orphan and defend the widow, in other words take care of the needy, weak and vulnerable or neglected people around.

Therefore every authoritative behaviour clubbed with arrogance and dominance and presuming the superior needs to be avoided.  Rather through empowering and enabling others one can wash clean. One can free from the clutches of the fantasy world, false honesty, admiration and appreciation.

 

As a result there is hope of being accepted by God and being blessed accordingly.

God blesses us when we present ourselves honestly before with all our mistakes, imperfection but if we try to act, disguise, refuse and resist and crave for the title and authority. God does not accept, He is not pleased with us.  So let this lent be  a time to turn from hypocrisy to honesty.

 

“Though your sins are like scarlet, they may become white as snow; Though they be crimson red, they may become white as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18)

whoever humbles himself will be exalted."( Matthew 223:12)


FR. JAYARAJU MANTHENA OCD

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