• Wartakanlah Injil kepada segala makhluk.
    Mrk 16:15

  • 你们往普天下去, 向一切受造物宣传福音
    谷 16:15

  • Everything is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit’s Grace.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • Segala sesuatu menjadi mungkin dalam kekuatan karunia Roh Kudus.
    St. Arnold Janssen

  • 我当传教士不是为主牺牲,而是上主给我的最大恩赐
    圣福若瑟神父

  • Với sức mạnh Ân Huệ của Chúa Thánh Thần, Mọi việc đều có thể được.
    St Arnoldus Janssen

  • Preach the Gospel to the whole creation./Anh em hãy đi khắp tứ phương thiên hạ, loan báo Tin Mừng cho mọi loài thọ tạo
    Mk 16:15

  • There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit.
    1 Cor 12:4

  • And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
    Jn 1:14

  • Let the word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you.
    Col 3:16

  • To proclaim the Good News is the first and greatest act of love of neighbour.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • 传扬天国福音是第一且最大的爱近人行动
    圣杨生•爱诺德神父

  • Có nhiều đặc sủng khác nhau, nhưng chỉ có một Thần Khí/
    1 Cor. 14:4

  • 圣言成了血肉,寄居在我们中间
    若 1:14

  • Ada rupa-rupa karunia, tetapi Roh satu
    1 Kor 12:4

Saturday, 09 October 2021 19:04

28th Week in Ordinary Time - Year B - 2021

Written by Fr Yon Wiryono SVD

Fr Yon Wiryono headshot 150The dialogue between Jesus and a young man in the Gospel story for 28th Sunday of Ordinary time, is so profound. A young man comes to Jesus, asking “What should I do to inherit the eternal life?” Jesus, at first replies by reminding him to observe the Ten Commandments. And the young man said, “yes, he has fulfilled all of it”. Jesus loves him because of his faithfulness in observing the Ten Commandments. Nevertheless, Jesus challenged him, “but there’ is one thing you lack. Go and sell everything you own and give the money to the poor, and then come follow me!” Something unexpected happens, the young man goes away sadly, for he is a rich young man.

 What can we learn from this story? First of all, in my reflection, it seems like the young man has asked the wrong question of Jesus. But, whatis wrong with the question? Perhaps, salvation is not a private matter. It is not about I am going to heaven and only myself is going to there. Therefore, I only care about my own life and my own private faith and forget about the needs of others.  

If we can only enter into heaven, not by our own deeds, but by the grace of God then we are all sinners; therefore we can only enter into eternal life by the grace and mercy of God. That is what Paul says “We are saved by grace through faith in Christ Jesus and not by our own efforts or works.”(Ephesians 2:8-9).

Eternal life  starts now on earth. Our lives are meant to be eternal, we cannot wait to enjoy the Kingdom of God after we die, but the Kingdom of God is now on earth, together with our brothers and sisters. There’s no point trying to enter eternal life, by ignoring our brothers and sisters who are in need.

Jesus praises the young man, but also challenges him: observing the Ten Commandments is not enough. Jesus does not mean that the Ten Commandments are not important, Jesus actually adds something that makes them more important. Remember, Jesus came not to abolish the law but to complete the law. We notice that, the man who came up to Jesus is clearly a very good person. It is true, that if we follow the Ten Commandments in our life, we become a good person. 

But Jesus in today’s gospel brings more meaning to it: He puts the soul in it. As we know, the greatest law is to love God and to love our neighbour. Something that is lack in the young man’s life is his obligation to love his brothers and sisters.  By saying to the Young Man:— “Go and sell everything you have and give it to the poor. Jesus implicitly is saying “share your goods with one another”. It is not enough to simply follow the the Commandment.The first and the greatest is to love God and your neighbour. The whole law is contained  in these two commandments

If we reflect carefully on the Ten Commandments, we notice that the emphasis is on what we do rather than on what happens to others. The focus is on me, but not on others. So, Jesus actually changes the perspective of the young man, to focus on others. The young man is not told just to give alms generously to the poor. He is told to sell all his property and give it to the poor. In my reflection, the Gospel is not about giving donations, in fact it’s part of it as well, but many people who don’t believe in the Gospel giving donations too. It’s not like giving donations from one’s surplus; it is about sharing what one has with one’s brother and sister. 

The young man in the story is not told to give a bit of his wealth to the poor, but to sell everything and giving everything to the poor and follow Jesus. This means sharing what you have with the poor.  It is not literally about selling all we have now, but, sharing what we have. Remember the story of the poor widow who out of her poverty, gave all she owned, all she had to live on (Mark 12:43-44). We are reminded today of the spirituality of sharing.  

It’s true that Jesus commented on how difficult it was for the rich to enter the kingdom of God. It was easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to belong to the kingdom of God. Jesus did not say that being rich is not good. However, it is not good enough.  The way we see material wealth or material richness is to turn it into a blessing not only for ourselves, but for others too, simply by generously sharing our goods.  The young man in the story, went away unhappy, because he had that kind of strong attachment to his wealth. He loves his wealth. But for us, we love people, especially those in need because our heart is created to love people, not to love the material things in life. Our lives are richer when we share our blessings.