June 10 2023 Gospel Reading and Reflection

6/10/2023 (Saturday) Today’s gospel reading: Mark 12:38-44

38 In the course of his teaching Jesus said, “Watch out for the scribes, who like to walk around in their long robes and be greeted with respect in the market place,
39 seats of honor in synagogues, and places of honor at banquets.
40 They take advantage of widows and rob them of their homes, and then make a show of saying long prayers. Their punishment will be all the worse!”
41 He sat down opposite the treasury and observed how the crowd put money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums.
42 A poor widow also came and put in two small coins worth a few cents.
43 He called his disciples together and said to them, “I tell you that this poor widow put more in the offering box than all the others.
44 For the others put in what they had to spare of their riches; but she, poor as she is, put in all she had — she gave all she had to live on.”

6/10/2023 (Saturday) Today’s gospel reflection: Mark 12:38-44

After several encounters with the religious authorities particularly the scribes, Jesus gives a sweeping condemnation of them for their arrogance, self-importance and love of money. Moreover, He says that they deserve great punishment. These teachers of the law were expected to be the epitome of holiness but they failed miserably to live up to expectation. Even worse is their attitude towards the less fortunate members of society like the poor widows.

The gospel reading above is a call for everyone to watch out for our behavior. It is an invitation for introspection. How many times did we act in order to attract attention and for others to praise us? What is our motivation in going to church and donating resources? Did we lift a finger to help the last, the least and the lost among us? Or did we use our position in society to take advantage and oppress them?

Great responsibility comes great expectation. Even in our time, a lot of the so-called elite members of our community have become the modern scribes and Pharisees. Some politicians most especially are notorious for their greed of power and money. Many of them live scandalous lives of wealth even if millions of people wallow in poverty.

Yet no matter how big or small the responsibility placed on our shoulders, it is expected of us to carry it out with love and dedication. May the Spirit of the Lord continue to guide each one of us that we may live in accordance with the gospel message of love, humility and justice.

Go here to read reflection on the poor widow.

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