Our Gospel this weekend continues the Sermon on the Mount, with Jesus challenging us to be light for the world and salt for the earth. Our first reading from Isaiah gives us two clear ways to do it, two ways clearly supported by Gospel values.
The first is to take care of those in need: share your bread with the hungry, shelter the oppressed and homeless, clothe the naked, and don’t turn your back on your own. That we understand the importance of this is underscored by the honor we give to those who have done a good job of living it out, like Francis of Assisi, Dorothy Day, and Oscar Romero.
The second is to remove from our midst oppression, false accusation, and malicious speech. It is refraining from harming others through speech or social media. It is making sure everything we say, be it verbal, in writing, or on social media, builds up others, rather than tearing them down.
It is obvious that our world needs our witness and action in both of these areas, as indicated by the prevalence of the following: poverty and hunger, refugees who are ignored, hatred and gun violence on our streets, government officials who speak badly of others instead of working together for the common good, etc.
We cannot change the whole world, but we can influence the world around us by being kind and generous to others, as well as by refraining from negative speech. When we can do these things, we are truly salt for the earth and light for the world. We are living as Jesus did and that is what it means to be His disciple. God bless.
Church sign of the week: Our family tree is rooted in love.