This is a reflection on the Gospel of this Sunday, August 29, 2021 by Sr. Danielle Charron, SP of the Emilie Gamelin Province of the Sisters of Providence in Montreal. 

“The Word of God of this Sunday helps us understand that the true defilement that makes us impure for God, is not so much what we touch or what we ingest, but what we bear witness to.

In this text, Jesus wants to emphasize that this is a question of moral or religious impurities, and not of food hygiene. Jesus proves that the Pharisees and scribes put so much importance on the ritual, that it is easier for them to observe, even strictly, the smallest details of the ceremonial law than to recognize the moral impurity that is part of human nature.

Jesus wants us to understand that all these rituals are only external, mere appearance. “The purification of cups and jugs and kettles; this people honors me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” Jesus teaches us that this is not how he wants to relate to his disciples. Therefore, he invites them to talk to each other about the important matters, to recognize each other in the truth of who they are, to experience the shift from appearance to their deep inner being. This is how he wishes to enter into a relationship of love with his disciples.”

Who do you recognize yourself in truth to be?  How have you come to know Providence in your deep inner being?

 Barbara McMullen, CDP


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