WORD of the DAY
Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me… And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me’. (Matthew 25: 34-36/ 40)
Today’s Gospel has aroused great fascination through the centuries, even to this day so distracted by the secularized culture of our times. The concreteness of the gestures on which our eternal destiny will be decided and the ultimate truth of humanity, are presented with such simplicity and immediacy that it conquers all possible ideologies to the contrary.
In the end, we will all be judged on the basis of the concrete gestures of solidarity that we have shown to those in need or that we have not shown. On this lies in the balance an eternity of happiness or an eternity of suffering.
It is also noteworthy that Jesus identifies with the needy, with all those to whom we are to show love and concern. “You did it to me”….Mother Teresa of Calcutta considered these the most important words of the Gospel.
Our salvation depends on our actions now, on our seeing Jesus in others because He identifies with them. When we care for them, we are caring for Him; when we reject them, we are rejecting Jesus.
The voice of Pope Francis in the Bull of Indiction of the Jubilee of Mercy
We cannot escape from Jesus’ words on the basis of which we shall be judged: if we have given the hungry to eat, the thirsty to drink. If we have received the stranger, clothed the naked. If we have made time to be with the sick and the prisoner.