October 30 – Thirty First Sunday in Ordinary Time : Zacchaeus’Transformation

October 26th, 2016

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First Reading  Wisdom 11:22—12:2
God is merciful because all things were created by God.


Responsorial Psalm  Psalm 145:1-2,8-9,10-11,13,14
Sing praise to God, who is faithful.


Second Reading  2 Thessalonians 1:11—2:2
Paul tells the Thessalonians to remain faithful to Christ until Christ comesagain.


Gospel Reading
Luke 19:1-10 


In the figure ofZacchaeus in today’s Gospel, we have a portrait of a lost soul. He is a chieftax collector, a rich man who has apparently gained his living by fraud byprofession and so a“sinner” excluded from Israel’s religious life. ButZacchaeus’ faith & humility bring salvation to his house. He expresses hisfaith in his fervent desire to “see” Jesus, even humbling himself to climb atree just to watch Him pass by. While those of loftier religious stature reactto Jesus with grumbling, Zacchaeus receives Him with joy. Beneath the loving gaze of Christ, the heart ofZacchaeus warms to love of neighbour. From a feeling of isolation, which hadled him to enrich himself without caring about what others had to suffer, hemoves to an attitude of sharing. In another passage of the Gospel Jesus statesthat it is very difficult for a rich man to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven(cf. Matthew 19:23). In the case of Zacchaeus we see that precisely what seemsimpossible actually happens: "He," St. Jerome comments, "gaveaway his wealth and immediately replaced it with the wealth of the Kingdom ofHeaven" (Homily on Psalm 83:3). And Maximus of Turin adds: "Riches,for the foolish, feed dishonesty, but for the wise they are a help to virtue;for the latter they offer a chance of salvation, for the former they procure astumbling block and perdition" (Sermon 95). And it is only at this pointthat the love of God achieves its purpose, and salvation is accomplished:'Today salvation has come to this house' (v 9)."