Mother Teresa Day

Faith in Action

Reading: Matthew 25:31-46

"What you have done to one of the least of these My brothers, you have done it unto Me" (Mt 25:40)

Why did he go to hell? The sin of the rich man of Luke 16 was one of omission. He did nothing to alleviate the pain of Lazarus who was full of sores. He failed to provide a simple food and shelter to the one lying at his gate. Why did the King drive out those on the left hand into everlasting fire? Their sins of omission brought on this everlasting punishment (Mt 25:41-46). I wonder why the Church speaks so little about this apostolic teaching to "remember the poor" (Gal 2:10), which decides our eternal destiny. I urge teachers in Schools and Colleges to help students imbibe the spirit of charity even before they enter the world. Today is Teachers Day!

That rugged Preacher in the desert, who called for repentance, urged his hearers, "He who has two shirts, let him give one to him who has none; and he who has food, let him do likewise" (Lk 3:10,11). The apostle of "faith and works" has given the best definition of pure religion: "To visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world" (Js 1:27). He challenges that faith without action will not save anyone (Js 2:14-16). Greeting without giving is faith without action.

God is referred to as the "God of the Poor" in the Scriptures, again and again. David called Him "the Helper of the fatherless" (Psa 10:14), "a Father of the fatherless," "and a Defender of widows" (Psa 68:5). Do we reflect His character of defending the cause of the poor?

Hear Prophet Isaiah explaining God's chosen fast: "To loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, to let the oppressed go free and to break every yoke!" He adds, "Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and that you bring to your house the poor who are cast out? ...when you see the naked that you cover him and not hide yourself from your own flesh?" (Isa 58:6,7). If we do not love a neighbour whom we have seen, how can we love God whom we have not seen? "He who mocks the poor reproaches his Maker" (Prov 17:5). Job was a man of practical righteousness (Job 29:11-17). His philosophy was, "Why have a hand that helps not?" (Job 31:16-22).

We thank God for Mother Teresa (1910-1997) who established in our Nation the truth, Christianity is Charity.

    Pressing on together, doing good to all,

    In the Name of Jesus lifting those who fall;

    To the poor and friendless give with open hand

    This is our endeavour, this the Lord's command!

     - Fanny J. Crosby, 1820-1915

R. Stanley