Prayer of the Day

Feast of St. Louis of France & St. Joseph of Calasantz

August 25th, 2014
""Alas for you Scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites. You shut the Kingdom of Heaven in men's faces, neither going in yourselves nor allowing others to go in who want to."" Matthew 23 : 13

These are strong words of condemnation.  We see that Christ had no time for hypocrites.  Nor was he into religion as such.  He disliked the ‘trappings’ worn by religious personnel.  It was the inner faith that mattered,  not an outward show of religion.  Christ preferred the company of sinners and publicans,  the poor and the needy like the lepers who were ostracised.

From the time of Christ,  the Christians suffered because of their faith.  The Pharisees drove them out of the Temple.  They were persecuted and put to death.  But Christ had forewarned them.  “If in the greenwood they do these things,  what shall be done in the dry?”   If his enemies crucified Christ,  what can his followers expect?   Before his conversion,  Paul boasted of the numbers of Christians he had put to death including St. Stephen, the first martyr.  But St. Paul and the Pharisees really thought they were doing the work of God.   They were blinded by hatred,  hatred of the Nazarene and his followers.

Down the centuries,  endless wars have been fought over religion.  Even today,  Christians are being driven out of their homelands in Iraq,  a place where for centuries they have lived in peace and harmony with their Muslim neighbours.  this is the work of fanatics who are unaware that we are all God’s children and he loves us all equally.

Prayer Let us pray: Each of us is God's presence on earth. God has a personal love for each of us. He created us out of love. Help us Lord to reach out in love to all people whatever their religion, creed or colour. Amen