Gospel Reflection – Week 26 Ordinary Time – Cycle C – Luke 16:19-31

The spiritual life prepares us for a role-reversal in the ways that we are used to. The world can be a cruel place, an inhospitable and unpleasant experience. But God is always with us in our hardships.

Sometimes, we may be aware that there are people at our door. They are in need: perhaps for food and drink, perhaps for some form of advocacy in health or social matters. Do we open our door to these people, these individuals who, sometimes, we may be tempted to look down upon, or at the very least, forget exist.

So we, too, may sometimes find ourselves at the door of someone who may be able to help us. This can be an embarrassing experience. Many families have experienced this when they need the assistance of a food bank or some urgent financial support. Receiving help is not always easy. But the man in today’s Gospel camped at the door of the rich man. He seemed to place his trust in the hope of humanity. But humanity did not help him.

Our trust is in the Lord. But we should also be his ambassadors by showing the trust of God to those in need. We should learn, in the economy of God’s grace, to love and be loved. This is not easy. We should open the door, when those are in need, and help them. And we should learn to receive the love and support of others, too.

Today’s Gospel gives us the inspiration, perhaps, to unplug ourselves from the selfish principles that humanity holds so dear. The Kingdom of God is infinitely greater than any worldly wealth, even that of billionaires. And our life is short; soon we will come to God’s kingdom, and God may ask us how we think we have done. What will our answer be? Have we opened our door? Have we shared? Have we overlooked our wealth for the greater glory of God?


A reading from the Gospel according to Luke  16:19-31

Jesus said to the Pharisees:
‘There was a rich man who used to dress in purple and fine linen and feast magnificently every day. And at his gate there lay a poor man called Lazarus, covered with sores, who longed to fill himself with the scraps that fell from the rich man’s table. Dogs even came and licked his sores. Now the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to the bosom of Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried.

‘In his torment in Hades he looked up and saw Abraham a long way off with Lazarus in his bosom. So he cried out, “Father Abraham, pity me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in agony in these flames”. “My son,” Abraham replied “remember that during your life good things came your way, just as bad things came the way of Lazarus. Now he is being comforted here while you are in agony. But that is not all: between us and you a great gulf has been fixed, to stop anyone, if he wanted to, crossing from our side to yours, and to stop any crossing from your side to ours.”

‘The rich man replied, “Father, I beg you then to send Lazarus to my father’s house, since I have five brothers, to give them warning so that they do not come to this place of torment too”. “They have Moses and the prophets,” said Abraham “let them listen to them.”. “Ah no, father Abraham,” said the rich man “but if someone comes to them from the dead, they will repent.” Then Abraham said to him, “If they will not listen either to Moses or to the prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone should rise from the dead”.’

The Gospel of the Lord
Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.