TWENTY SECOND SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME, YEAR C
28th August 2022
Ecclesiasticus 3:19-21,30-31; Hebrews 12:18-19,22-24: Luke 14:1,7-14.
Today the church reminds us through the readings that humility is an integral part of Christian life. Jesus told a parable on how to behave when one is invited as a guest at banquet. According to him, everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and the man who humbles himself will be exalted. We deceive ourselves to think that humility will fall on us like magic or miracle. It is cultivated like all other virtues. The challenge before us is how to cultivate and maintain a humble life.
The second reading presented Jesus as the mediator of all virtues. It is by imitating Jesus that we learn how to be humble. Imitation is an important aspect of human nature. It is responsible for all we know and do, good or bad. We learn by imitation. The process of imitation is responsible for the best and the worst in us. Humility is the acknowledgment of the process of imitation. Recognizing Jesus as the mediator of all virtues is humility. Pride and arrogance is the denial of this process. This is the root cause of every human violent behaviour. According to the first reading there is no cure for the proud man’s malady, since an evil growth has taken root in him.
The impulse to deny the process of imitation is based on an unfounded fear. We fear our uniqueness will be consumed in the process. What makes us unique is not what we do because nothing is new under the sun. What makes us unique is how we make us of the process of imitation. Humility does not seek to be greater than the other. The disciple is not greater than the master, he can only be like his master. By recognizing Jesus as the mediator of humility, we strive to be as humble as he is. The greater you are, the more you should behave humbly, and then you will find favour with the Lord; for great though the power of the Lord is, he accepts the homage of the humble.
Fr Anthony Ekpunobi, CM