Sharper then any two-edged sword

Reflection for the 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time by Sr. Maryann Mueller, CSSF
This reflection was originally posted in our October 5th newsletter

“Indeed the word of God is living and effective, sharper than any two-edged sword.” (Heb. 4: 12) Our readings this Twenty-eighth Sunday in Ordinary time remind us that the word of God is meant to provoke us out of our comfortablenesss. Today’s Gospel should afflict each of us because each of us has something that may make us, as wealth did for the rich young man, “to go away sad.” (Mk. 10: 22) This young man whom Jesus “looked upon with love” (MK 10: 21) had many possessions which he put before his love of God.

In most societies today, money equals power. This is probably most evident in the United States when it comes to the power money has in politics. Since the Supreme Court lifted limits on political spending by unions and corporations in 2010, and subsequently lifted spending limits to candidates, political parties and political action committees, money has served to silence the voice of the electorate. Unlimited political spending by corporations and certain individuals is undermining our system of representative democracy.

Franciscan Action Network is part of an interfaith coalition, Faithful Democracy, which studies the effects of money in politics. This coalition looks at the issue from both a faith and legislative perspective. When examining the societal concerns around climate change, gun violence prevention, and immigration and private prisons they found that every one of these issues is affected by big money.

Is political influence being bought? Our legislators appear to be putting monetary “donations” over the wishes of the electorate and the common good. For example, over 90% of the American people support controls on the sale of guns, such as universal background checks. Close to 90,000 children, women and men have been killed by guns in the United States since the mass killing in Newtown, Connecticut nearly three years ago. Yet, our legislators are still unwilling to take any action that would limit who may legally purchase guns.

Pope Francis has said that the ideology of money has become the new golden calf. The power of money has turned many of us, as well as our legislators, away from what is best for the common good of all people. Pope Francis challenges us to find ways to use financial resources and political power to aid poor people. Are we using our resources and our wealth, both as individuals and as a nation, to bring us to God or is it turning us, as it did the young man in today’s Gospel, away from God? May the word of God be for us living and effective, sharper than a two-edged sword.

Sr. Maryann Mueller, CSSF
FAN Board Member

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Published in: on October 6, 2015 at 9:13 am  Leave a Comment  

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