FRIDAY 31ST JULY 2020
MEMORIAL OF ST. IGNATIUS OF LOYOLA
JEREMIAH 26:1-9, MATTHEW 13:54-58
SAY IT EVEN IF THEY HATE YOU
Today we celebrate the memorial of St. Ignatius of Loyola. The story of his conversation to the Christian faith is a very captivating one, and a proof that God has plans for everyone.
He was not a religious minded person before becoming a soldier. He was sent to the war front where he was badly injured. It was on the sick bed in the clinic where he was being treated that a saw a book which someone had probably dropped there. The book was titled "lives of saints". After reading about the lives of many saints, he said that they were mere human beings like him who made efforts to live a good life. He later read the bible to know more about God. It was then he decided to be a priest and live a holy life when he got well. He later studied for the priesthood and among 10 others, they founded a religious order known as the society of Jesus (Jesuits). He was their first superior general and he helped to reform the church during the turbulent times.
In the first reading of today, we see that many people will not like a prophet who speaks the truth. Some will hate you and some will plan for your downfall. Sometimes, we are afraid to say the truth because others will hate us. God tells us today that he will hold us responsible for the truth we refuse to utter because it could helped those who hear it to repent, if not now, later. God will hold responsible those who refuse to listen to the truth, but he will hold you responsible for not saying the truth.
In the gospel reading, we see that even Jesus was taken for granted by his own family and neighbours because they know him, but he was not discouraged from speaking in the synagogue.
Do not be discouraged in speaking the truth. You can never tell who is listening and who may repent. When someone dropped a holy book and bible in the hospital, he/she never thought that St Ignatius will come there one day. The good things we do that are not acknowledge or rewarded should not discourage us. God will surely ask us on the last day. God help us. Amen
Fr Michael Osatofoh Eninlejie MSP