Word of the day

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Monday of the Twenty-ninth Week in Ordinary Time

Reading of the day

A reading from the Letter of St. Paul to the Romans
Rom 4:20-25

Brothers and sisters:
Abraham did not doubt God's promise in unbelief;
rather, he was empowered by faith and gave glory to God
and was fully convinced that what God had promised
he was also able to do.
That is why it was credited to him as righteousness.
But it was not for him alone that it was written
that it was credited to him;
it was also for us, to whom it will be credited,
who believe in the one who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead,
who was handed over for our transgressions
and was raised for our justification.

Gospel of the day

From the Gospel according to Luke
Lk 12:13-21

Someone in the crowd said to Jesus,
"Teacher, tell my brother to share the inheritance with me."
He replied to him,
"Friend, who appointed me as your judge and arbitrator?"
Then he said to the crowd,
"Take care to guard against all greed,
for though one may be rich,
one's life does not consist of possessions."

Then he told them a parable.
"There was a rich man whose land produced a bountiful harvest.
He asked himself, 'What shall I do,
for I do not have space to store my harvest?'
And he said, 'This is what I shall do:
I shall tear down my barns and build larger ones.
There I shall store all my grain and other goods
and I shall say to myself, "Now as for you,
you have so many good things stored up for many years,
rest, eat, drink, be merry!"'
But God said to him,
'You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you;
and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?'
Thus will it be for the one who stores up treasure for himself
but is not rich in what matters to God."

Words of the Holy Father

Today’s Gospel passage (cf. Lk 12:13-21) begins with the narrative of a man who stands up among the multitude and asks Jesus to settle a legal matter concerning a family inheritance. However, Jesus does not address the matter in his reply, but rather urges the people to eschew covetousness, that is, the greed of possession. In order to divert his listeners from this exhausting search for wealth, Jesus tells the parable of the foolish rich man who believes he is happy because he has had the good fortune to reap an exceptional harvest and he feels secure thanks to the goods he has accumulated. (…) The rich man puts three considerations before his soul, that is, himself: the accumulated goods, the many years that these goods appear to ensure him, and thirdly tranquility and unrestrained enjoyment (cf v. 19). But the word that God addresses to him nullifies his plans. Instead of “many years”, God points to the immediacy of “this night; tonight you will die”. Instead of the “enjoyment of life”, He presents him with “surrendering his life; you will render your life to God” with the ensuing judgment. Regarding the reality of the ample goods accumulated on which the rich man had based everything, it becomes shrouded in sarcasm by the question: “and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?” (v. 20). (…) The end of the parable as recounted by the Evangelist is uniquely effective: “So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God” (v. 21). It is a warning which reveals the horizon towards which we are called to look. Material goods are necessary — they are goods! —, but they are a means to live honestly and in sharing with the neediest. Today, Jesus invites us to consider that wealth can enslave the heart and distract it from the true treasure which is in heaven. (Angelus, 4 August 2019)