I heard this story from a homilist. “A man died and was admitted into heaven. The Angel gave him a brief tour around the Kingdom. What caught his attention were the numerous pairs of ears hanging all over. So, he asked the Angel, ‘What are those?’ The Angel replied, ‘Those are human ears.’ He asked, ‘But why are they here hanging all over the place?’ The Angel explained to him, ‘These are the ears of people who like to listen to the word of God but never practiced it. So, it is only their ears that are admitted in heaven.’”
Today’s Gospel is a remarkable passage in which Jesus drives home the message He values most. It is the relationship He shares with those who not only hear God’s word but put it into practice. Jesus is not saying that we should not love our father, mother, brothers, or sisters, but He is telling us to love Him first, and then He will teach us how to love others better.
Some years ago, I attended a Cursillo retreat at our Holy Cross retreat house in Easton. It was such an uplifting, life-changing experience of the outpouring of God’s love filled with joy. There were concrete examples of witnesses who put the love of God into action through their way of life. The reflections and sharing of God’s love in groups, prayers, and the palancas would move you to tears of joy. (Palancas are letters of support, encouragement, and love.) The more I experienced the love of God, the more I felt I should love others in a more generous, helpful, thoughtful, and compassionate way. I thought I did not love enough.
Growing in our relationship with God will offer us the greatest of relationships with others. May we listen with an open heart to His Word. May we draw from the unending love of God and give more attention to love those we claim to love. May we do what is right and act on the Word we hear.
Today's readings on this the Memorial of Saint Andrew Kim Taegon, priest and martyr, and Saint Paul Chong Hasang, catechist and martyr, and their companions, martyrs
To view Rosary prayer and Mass streaming live, please visit our Facebook pageat 11:30 am EDT, Monday – Friday. Please invite your loved ones to join us too! (You don't need a Facebook account to view.)
About Father Pinto Paul, C.S.C.
Father Pinto Paul C.S.C., ordained a priest in the Congregation of Holy Cross in 1999, worked with tribal populations in northeast India as a missionary for ten years. In 2010 he came to the US for further studies. While working as a campus minister at Stonehill College, he assisted pastors in local parishes, led seminars and workshops for teachers and students in the US and earned a master’s degree in Educational Administration from Boston College and a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership from Lesley University, Cambridge. He is currently working as the International Director of the Boston-based Holy Cross Family Ministries with missions in 17 countries.