St. Edmund Campion Parish, Maidenhead

26th Sunday, Year B (27 Sep 2015)

Be open to others

Last week someone came to propose to me some changes to a youth activity. Not the usual people who like to tell others how to do what they don't do. No. Someone who collaborates effectively. My first thought was: "No! My idea is better". But I did not say anything. Afterwards, when considering the proposal, I realised that it was not that bad at all, and we incorporated it into the educational youth activity.

Sometimes we are jealous of others, or tend to underestimate others’ ideas, or reject them for their ideas.

The case of Moses is interesting: First reading: "Two men began to prophesy in the camp. Then said Joshua the son of Nun, who had served Moses from his youth, ‘My Lord Moses, stop them!’ Moses answered him, ‘Are you jealous on my account? If only the whole people of the Lord were prophets, and the Lord gave his Spirit to them all!’" Moses is passionate for his mission and everything happening accordingly to the main purpose is welcomed as something good. Because, as the Psalm says, The Lord gives wisdom to the simple.

The Gospel is about the same: John said to Jesus, ‘Master, we saw a man who is not one of us casting out devils in your name; and because he was not one of us we tried to stop him.’ But Jesus said, ‘You must not stop him: no one who works a miracle in my name is likely to speak evil of me. Anyone who is not against us is for us.

Rather than defining and condemning the outsider, our eyes should be open to God's presence wherever it is to be found. This seems self-evident, and yet prejudice frequently blinds us to the goodness that is to be found in everyone, in every culture, in every class. Jesus helps us to be open to acknowledge the goodness wherever it is to be found: "if anyone gives you a cup of water just because you belong to Christ, he will most certainly not lose his reward."