SATURDAY 28 FEBRUARY 2015
“But I say this to you!”
28th February is the anniversary of my ordination as Bishop of Kokstad. So, it has special memories, but even more special than the memories are the challenges, the most daunting being Jesus’ statement, which comes to mind when I remember that day: “But I say this to you: ‘Be perfect even as your heavenly Father is perfect’.”
My first reaction is always: “That’s not possible! Who can be as perfect as God?” But, on reflection, is Jesus speaking about being perfect as God is perfect, or does he mean being a perfect father, mother, sister, brother, just as God is a perfect Father to us?
Whichever way you find the Spirit leading you in your reflection and prayer during these days of Lent, make sure to keep in mind the perfection Jesus is focusing on. The perfection he is talking about concerns our relations with our neighbour, with our “enemy”, with the wicked, with the outcast, with the pagan, the unbeliever!
Jesus is challenging us, his Disciples – the Father’s beloved sons and daughters – to be towards all people just as God is to them. He is a Father who always acts out of love and compassion, and to all His children, but especially to those whom no body notices or cares for because they are on the margins of not just society, but of our love and concern!
Questions for meditation:
To whom does God want and need me to be a Father (Mother), Brother (Sister), Friend, Helper of last resort? How will I respond to this challenge during these days of Lent? How do I foresee Lent bringing about a renewal and rebirth of my faith, so that I am and act I the way that he is calling me to?
Prayer (from 2nd Sunday of Lent)
O God, who have commanded us to listen to your beloved Son, be pleased, we pray, to nourish us inwardly by your word, that with spiritual sight made pure, we may rejoice to behold your glory.
Through Christ our Lord. AMEN.
One week of Lent has already gone by, let me review the actions that have chosen to take in order to reach out anew to God, to my Brothers and Sisters, but especially to those on the margins of society!
+Cardinal Wilfred Napier OFM
Archdiocese of Durban