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Examine Scripture

Romans 12:13

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Helping Our Brothers and Sisters…

When our fellow Catholics and Christians are in need, we should go out of our way to help them out:

“Contribute to the needs of the holy ones, exercise hospitality.” -Romans 12:13, NAB

Some translations actually translate holy ones as saints.  Essentially, when we refer to the saints, we are talking not just about the saints in heaven, but the saints here on earth as well – our fellow Christians.  Paul’s challenge for us today, then, is to assist our brothers and sisters in need.

Today’s verse in Romans coincides well with today’s Gospel verse from Mass, wherein Jesus is explaining the two greatest commandments:

“One of the scribes, when he came forward and heard them disputing and saw how well he had answered them, asked him, ‘Which is the first of all the commandments?’ Jesus replied, ‘The first is this: “Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.” The second is this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these.'” -Mark 12:28-31, NAB

We must love our God, but we must also love our neighbor as we love ourselves.  Of course, we must love all people, Catholic or not, but our brothers and sisters in Christ should hold a very special place in our heart.  As a community of believers, if we fail to take care of our own, how can we even begin to help anyone else?

It may come as a shoulder to cry on, offering an ear to listen, or even through the changing of a tire.  No matter what our brothers and sisters need, we should be there to help.  By showing love in these ways, we are reflecting the love Christ has shown for us.

Let’s continually show our fellow saints on earth Christ’s love through our actions.  When they are hungry, feed them.  When they are in pain, console them.  When they are troubled, lift them up.  When they succeed, celebrate with them.  When they pass away, pray for them.  May our love for each other show the world the truly awesome power and greatness of God’s merciful love.

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