Reflection on Today’s Daily Readings by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM
Scripture: June 5. Lectionary # 358. II Tim. 4:1-8. Psalm71: 8-9,14-15,16-17. 22. Mark 12:38-48. Paul gives us his parting words to his spiritual son and disciple, Timothy. Paul has been and will be content to do what he can to preach and teach Jesus crucified and risen. He does this till his final breath and in his martyrdom in Rome. He has been content with his life which was so different from how he started out as a persecutor of those belonging to the new sect of Jews called Christians. He has been so united to Jesus that he now images his life as a libation poured out for the Lord and for others. He looks toward the goal of his life which is to be united to God eternally and he is confident he will obtain this as a reward for his stewardship. “I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” Jesus calls the attention of his disciples to a widow who is putting her last two copper coins into the temple treasury. She too like Paul has poured out her life as a libation for God and for the upkeep of God’s sacred place, the temple. Hers has been a life of simplicity, of poverty, and of reverence. Jesus points out that we can learn much from this simple widow. She is concerned about the things and thoughts of God–which is the point of view of Mark’s telling the stories of Jesus and his encounters with all sorts of people. She is not missed being seen by the Lord who loves her. In the first part of today’s gospel we see how she contrasts with those who like to dress as important or holy people. They like to show that they even pray and pray long prayers, but this is not what is important in the eyes of the Lord. The Scriptures help us to think along with the thoughts Paul and Jesus give us. We have sound healthy advice from them and should receive it as did Jesus disciples and as did Timothy and Titus, the disciples of Paul. The widow says nothing, but her reverent actions and her total gift of her possessions contrast with everyone who has entered the life of Jesus in these past two chapters. We all are led by such heroines and heroes who are not big into their own egos. Exempla trahant (good examples pushes us onward). Amen.