by Sister Annette Koss
We hear in the Gospel that Jesus is having quite a day of labor! The Pharisees are questioning Jesus about his disciples who are not exactly observing the traditions of the elders. Jesus is criticizing the disproportionate importance given to external laws to the detriment of human freedom to love with integrity.
Jesus is laboring for us to understand that outward observance is to be a reflection of inward relationship. We are to be inside-out persons and washing cups and hands will not remove human fragmentation. Religion is about bonding a community in love and not about observing irrelevant external laws. Jesus' labor day is every day and our laboring days are to reflect Jesus' compassion. It was compassion that compelled Saint Francis to throw caution to the winds and kiss the fragmented leper on the road.
The questions are not so much, "Is this a sin?" or "What can I get away with?" The real question is, "Is this a loving attitude, word or action?" The real challenge is to develop an awareness of God's compassionate presence and live out of that awareness.
Thank you for reminding us of the true labor that Jesus engaged in...His mission from the Trinity...the blind see, the deaf hear, the poor have the Gospel preached to them.
Thanks for your labor of love as you serve God's people.