July 21th, 2019

XVI Sunday of ordinary time

Year C

Hospitality makes life fruitful by allowing us to welcome, as poor people, the gift that another brings with us by visiting our tent.

Gen 18:1-10a; Ps 14 (15); Col 1:24-28; Lk 10:38-42

In the Bible, hospitality generates fruitfulness. Abraham welcomes three mysterious characters and on that day the barren Sara receives the promise of a son. Hosting, in fact, means recognizing that you can receive new life from those who, visiting us, carry with them a gift that would otherwise remain unavailable to us. Perhaps this is also Martha’s limit in her way of welcoming Jesus into her home. She is very generous, but she still risks offering the generosity of the rich, who want to offer the best they have and are capable of. A beautiful desire, which however must be integrated with the other attitude, that of Mary, who, thanks to her listening, welcomes what Jesus can give her, like a poor woman who knows she must depend on her gift. The best part, after all, is not listening as against service, but the attitude with which to live both listening and service: putting Jesus at the centre and not oneself, what he can give us and new life that he communicates to us, both by listening to his Word, and by modeling our serving on him, and on his profound feeling. As poor people who open themselves to accept the true riches that St. Paul reminds us of today: “Christ in us”. By welcoming him life becomes fruitful.

Commentary by Comunità di Dumenza

Translation by f. Mark Hargreaves, Prinknash Abbey

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