ST BERNARD, ABB. D. (Memorial) White
Bernard joined the monastic community of Citeaux at the age of 20 and was followed by his five brothers, two uncles and some other 30 young friends. He became the abbot of the monastery of Clairvaux. He attended the second Lateran Council and fought the heresy of Albigensianism. He died on August 20, 1153; and was the first Cistercian monk placed on the calendar of saints. He was proclaimed Doctor of the Church by Pope Pius VIII.
First Reading: Ezk 43:1-7a; Psalm: 85. R. v. 10b; Gospel: Mt 23:1-12
THE BLEND OF WORDS AND ACTIONS
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
Jesus respected and upheld the good tradition of his people. Although he condemned the life style of the Scribes and Pharisees, he however approved of their teachings. This was because they occupied the seat of Moses and what they taught was a continuity of the teachings of the law which God handed to Moses. Moses handed over this law to Joshua. From Joshua it got to the elders, from the elders to the Prophets, and from the Prophets to the Scribes and Pharisees. But Jesus disapproved of the attitudes of the Pharisees because it contradicted what they taught.
In life, one may be a very good teacher but dishonest. Some are good advisers and motivators but ill-mannered. Some spouses may not be faithful to each other but are readily available to their children. Some wives are very hardworking but are hostile and disrespectful. We all have our flip sides that we are not proud of and that is capable of making a mess of all the good things we do.
Actions are affective. We can make a very powerful impact when what we say is further consolidated by our actions. Once our actions are far removed from what we say, we become less influential. What Jesus wants from us is to observe and emulate the good in one another. To promote what is right and to amend the bad side of us. Because it is our duty as his follower to make positive impact in the lives of people by our words and actions. As we thank God for the grace of good actions, let us also pay attention to our negative attitudes and ask God for the grace to overcome them.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, purify our actions and the intentions of our heart. Amen.