SATURDAY 1ST AUGUST 2020
SEVENTEENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME YEAR II II
MEMORIAL OF ST. ALPHONSUS DE LIGUORI
GOD KNOWS HIS PLANS FOR US ALL
Yesterday we celebrated the memorial of St Ignatius of Loyola who left his military career to become a priest and founded the Jesuits. Today we celebrate another example of God's guiding light in human life, St Alphonsus. He was an exceptionally intelligent young man who obtained his doctorate in law at the age of 16. He was doing very well in life and many looked up to him. Nevertheless, he knew within him that his heart yearned for something else. He was moved to be zealous and concerned about the spiritual needs of the people rather than their temporal greed. When he lost a case as a lawyer, he believed that it was God's message to him to do what his heart truly yearns for. He left his profession at the age of 27 to study for the priesthood. He was ordained and later founded a religious congregation known as the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer (Redemptorists). He laboured for 20 years moving around for the work of winning souls for the kingdom of God. This was what made him happy and fulfilled.
When God calls and chooses, he also gives the grace one needs to withstand the hurdles that comes with it. It was not an easy one for St. Alphonsus, but God never abandoned him.
This is also what we see in the first reading and gospel reading of today. Jeremiah was faithful to his preaching and prophecy as a prophet. He told them the truth about their sinful lives and told them to repent. They got angry with him and wanted to kill him.
In the gospel reading, John the Baptist told Herod the truth that it was wrong for him to divorce his wife and marry his brother's wife. This cost him his life. He died for the truth, he died at his duty post. Truth hurts. When you live a straight forward life and tell people the truth, it hurts them and they want to destroy you. God is always on the side of truth and posterity judges everything and everyone. If there is something that should connect the priesthood, Lawyers and Military personnel, it is truth and justice. We can also apply it to our lives no matter what we do. God help us. Amen.
Fr Michael Osatofoh Eninlejie MSP