Today’s gospel shows Jesus sitting down opposite the treasury and he observed people coming by to put money into the treasury. Jesus saw the rich had put in large sums of money into the treasury.However, he noticed a poor widow who came up and put in two small coins into the treasury. He told his disciples, “Amen, I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the other contributors to the treasury. For they have all contributed their surplus wealth, but she,from her poverty, has contributed all she had, her whole livelihood”(Mark 12:38-44).
Yet again, Jesus is moved by acts of faith in people that even though they have little, they are still able to contribute in one way or another. Likewise, the message is that God has given us the gifts and talents, so we should use these resources and not return to God empty-handed. We should always give with our hearts and generosity that our acts take precedence over our wealth. Money can always be earned back but our acts of faith unto others will last a lifetime or have a lasting impact.
I would like to use this article,“Pray and work: Benedictine uses motto to help people in northern Kenya”of Benedictine monk, Fr Florian which I found inspiring as he went all the way to help people who were poor and had little resources to rely on. The report noted that,“The priest has helped install the town’s new water system. He has helped build a mechanic’s garage, take care of the poor and send boys to school, but Father Florian is adamant that he does not give handouts.
“What’s the problem, why did it happen and how can I fix it?” Father Florian asked in reference to fixing the cars in his garage. He said he is especially proud of the garage, where those passing by can receive assistance while traveling. Illeret is almost a full day’s drive from the next-closest town.”
I like that Fr Florian uses the Benedictine motto of “Ora et Labora” or “Pray and Work” in doing small things for the greater group of the community that he is in charged of. It is comforting that people like Fr Florian have a mission in their hearts and minds which they are heading towards and that they never gave up despite the odds that are stacked against them. Everyone is capable of using the talents that they have in multiplying these special gifts.
It also sparked the recurring thought of being missionary disciples in giving wholeheartedly as with the Holy Spirit and Jesus’ help, no matter how small our talents, it can be used for something beautiful and meaningful. Let us through our daily moments be able to use these gifts and give more than we receive because nothing can compare to the eternal reward that is waiting for us at the end of our earthly journey. For we should fix our eyes to something permanent than temporary by treasuring the moments praying, reflecting and contributing back to society in our own means.
Let us also remember Pope Francis’s and Archbishop William’s prayer intentions for the Month of November 2015. “That we may be open to personal encounter and dialogue with all, even those whose convictions differ from our own. That pastors of the Church, with profound love for their flocks,may accompany them and enliven their hope.” Also,”For Christian communities to welcome the poor and those living on the fringes,with generosity and love.” It is important to not ignore the poor or marginalized as they deserve all the concern and help that we can give them in changing their lives for the better.
As we come to the year-end, may we continue to do acts of faith,create time for God and nurture our talents so that we do not go to him empty-handed. God Bless!
Written By: Darren Chan Keng Leong