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OT8-A-Stewards of God

I ENCOURAGE YOU TO READ Mt. Ch. 5-7, Sermon on Mount, in its entirety. Only
highlights are given in the readings over the past weeks, and this sermon could be considered the
greatest speech of all time, and the fundamental summary of the teaching of our Savior to us.
“Ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ,” says St. Jerome.
I want to look first at St. Paul's words in Corinthians: “regard us as servants of Christ and
stewards of the mysteries of God.” This is his summary of the ministry of the priest: they are entrusted
with the mysteries of God (the Greek mysterion is translated into the Latin as sacramentum sacrament).
This is what the priesthood is about. Service to God's people by being good stewards of what
they have been entrusted with: the sacraments, the teaching of the Word of God, and the governing of
the Church under Christ the one King.

But the clergy are not alone in this vocation of stewardship. We all have it, yet in different
ways. Today we are reminded in the Gospel that we cannot serve God and “mammon” (the Aramaic
word for money & posessions, aka “worldly stuff”).
The Catechism of the Catholic church, in paragraph 2545, cites Vatican II's document on the
nature of the Church Lumen Gentium in saying this about the vocation of every member of the Church:

2545 All Christ's faithful are to "direct their affections rightly, lest they be hindered in their pursuit of

perfect charity by the use of worldly things and by an adherence to riches which is contrary to the spirit of

evangelical poverty."

Stewards aren't attached to the things they have. They use them for the other, with his best

interest in mind. That is why Jesus continues by describing the things of the world that may make us

worry: the little details of food and clothing. “Do no worry about your life: what you will eat or drink,

or about your body, what you will wear...”

These are obviously things we need, but Jesus is calling us to remember who we are: Children
of God who will take care of us. “Your Heavenly Father” (or “your Father in Heaven” or “Your
Father”) shows up in the Gospel of Mathew 26 times, and 14 of those are in these three chapters. Jesus
is obviously stressing this point home for us! “Your heavenly Father knows you need all these things!”
This is why we heard the short words from Isaiah today: Zion said, “The LORD has forsaken me;
my LORD has forgotten me.” Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her
womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you. God will take care of you because you are his child:
“What father among you would hand his son a snake when he asks for a fish? Or hand him a scorpion when
he asks for an egg? If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much
more will the Father in heaven give the holy Spirit * to those who ask him?"”
St Therese spoke of God's desire to do good for us (especially the greatest good, which is our
spiritual good) in this way: "God's greatest pleasure is to pardon us. The good Lord is more eager to
pardon a repentant sinner than a mother to rescue her child from a fire."
Finally, Jesus gets to the point without confusion: “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His
righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”
All these teachings are summarized by our Lord Jesus in the prayer He Himself taught us:
Our Father, who are in Heaven, ... Your Kingdom come ... Give us this day our daily bread.
So worry not about things of this world. Do the work, but do not let it be an obstacle to your
growth in Grace, in Love, and especially not to your gaining the great prize of heaven.