Stop the killing, start the healing

The WORD in Other Words by Fr Flavianu Villanueva SVD (Philippines)

Feast of St Matthew the Evangelist, Eph 4:1–7, 11–13, Mt 9:9–13

Let‘s look at three movements in Matthew‘s calling and find some parallelism with the “signs of the times” today.   

First, Jesus recognizes Matthew‘s sinful life and calls him to a “new way of life.”   Today, drug addicts are killed. Just as we condemn the evil effects of drug abuse, like Jesus, we are called to recognize that “drug addicts” are human beings who are sick and needing medical and psychological care and mercy. Do we offer them opportunities for growth?   

Second, Matthew heard Jesus‘ invitation. “Follow me.”   Today, whose voice do we listen to? Is it a voice that calls us to curse or to affirm‘?   To proclaim fake or good news? Is it a voice calling us to choose violence and death or to give hope and lite?   

Third, the narrow-minded Pharisees derided Jesus‘ desire to be with the sinners.   Today, how would we treat a sinner/a drug addict, with mercy or condemnation?   Will we pardon and help the sinner or will we condone his killing?   

In Pope Francis‘ The Name of God is Mercy, he aptly says, “The Church Fathers teach us that a shattered heart is the most pleasing gift to God. It is the sign that we are   conscious of our sins, of the evil we have done, of our wretchedness, and of our need   for forgiveness and mercy.   

If Jesus were to see the “signs of the times” today, He would again declare, “I desire mercy, not sacrifice. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Like   Matthew to whom He said, “Follow me,” Jesus also summons us today, “Follow me,” don‘t be afraid to declare — Stop Condemning! Stop the Killings! Start the Healing.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.