Francis of Assisi
556 South Jersey Street;
Denver, CO 80224
National Catholic Church (PNCC)
St. Francis of Assisi Polish National Catholic Church (PNCC) @2008
Today’s Gospel is a continuation of the Sermon on the Mount. This Sermon, as it appears in Matthew (5 7), wasn’t delivered by Jesus on one occasion but was compiled from many. As was typical of Matthew, he collected many say¬ings and teachings of Jesus that were spoken on different occasions, and formed them into the one complete unit we read today. The Sermon on the Mount, as Matthew reported it, is a synopsis of the substance of the new dispensation –
the new order of salvation which Jesus established.
The primacy of the interior spirit (in contrast to the external observance of the Mosaic Law), detach¬ment from the wealth and goods of this world, and a love of all as brothers and sisters under the universal fatherhood of God, are its essential doctrines.
Jesus himself calls his true followers the “salt of the earth,” and the “light of the world.” These are titles of honor, and great distinction. Jesus is putting his true followers on almost the same level with himself. He is the light of the world; he is the salt of the earth. It is Jesus who gave men the knowledge of the true nature of God, as shown by the Incarnation. It is him who gives our life its flavor, who gives our life its meaning, its pre¬servation. By his death and resurrec¬tion he took away the sting of death, and removed its eternal corruption, by the guarantee and promise of a resur¬rection to an eternal life for us all.
As Christians we know this and if we live our Christian life daily and sincerely we help to bring this knowledge to those who’re ignorant of it. In doing this we become another Jesus Christ continuing his work of salvation on earth. And so, we are the salt of the earth and the light of the world. How many of us here this morning, can truly say that these honorable titles, which Jesus gives to his followers, are given to us? In true humility, we can all say that we’re far from worthy of any of them. Yet, many if not all of us are sincerely doing our little bit of Jesus' work in cultivating our own small corner of his vineyard.
Parents, who teach the Christian way of life to their children by word, and especially by example, are spreading the Christian faith. Every Christian, whether at home, in an office or factory or at the mall, who show that they’re Christians by their honesty, charity for their fellow¬men, their respect for God and the things of God, and in their speech, are spreading their Christian faith. All those who show moderation in their personal expenditures, and donate some of their savings to help their brothers and sisters who’re in need, these are true disciples of Jesus Christ and they’re co¬operating with him in bringing God's children back to their Father who is in heaven. Unlike the salt that’s lost its flavor and the light that’s kept under the bushel, the Christian who has be¬haved in this manner can change his attitude with the help of God's grace, which is never refused. He can become once more what he ought to be, a life preserver for his neighbor.
Life on earth is short. The demands of our Christian life are not always easy, but we know that if we live up to those demands, we are an image of Jesus Christ. We’re con¬tinuing his great work by our own good example to our neighbor, and we’re giving glory to God, and we are earning for ourselves the eternal light of heaven.
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February 5th - 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time- C 2017