Fr. Ottavio Raimondo
They didn’t want to welcome him because he was going to Jerusalem
The inhabitants of that village had their motivations in order not to welcome him, but, perhaps, you too have your motivations in order to do the same. Maybe the differences of race, origins and religion are too strong up to burn up all around. Also some personal reasons like ‘I have my dignity’, ‘it’s my right’, ‘It’s me to give up always’, ‘I don’t like it’, ‘everybody does like that’ and ‘what the people will say….’. Nevertheless according to the meaning of this Gospel, the first motivation that makes us not welcoming Jesus is to continue to be the pilots of our lives; instead if we do so we shall be called to be son and daughters at service of the Kingdom of God.
Lord, do you want us asking for a fire coming from heaven and burning up them all?
“A Christian isn’t a man in peace, but a man for peace: to make peace it’s the real Christian vocation” this is what wrote Fr. Mazzalori. We have learned from the Gospel how to walk, where to go, what we should take with us. Christ himself has taught us how to work exclusively with the power of love and his Word. We have not to set more fire upon the conflicts nowadays scaring the humanity: North and South, and, not God will, the conflict between Christian world and Muslim world. Once we are free from idols and disillusions, lies and compromises, we can believe that, in front of testimonies like Gandhi, La Pira, Mazzolari, Martin Luther King and Romero, “death is scaring” (David Maria Turoldo) , war and arrogance are scaring. Jesus didn’t prohibit us to protect ourselves, but prevented us to use certain strategies of defense . Off course he didn’t allow to kill or to destroy, he didn’t allow the ‘eye to eye’ law : “Did you ear that it was said ‘eye to eye’. But I tell you not to oppose the wicked.”
From what do you like to start disarming your heart and your hands?
No man, having put his hand unto the plough, and looking back, is fit for the Kingdom of God.
And then, if, in the midst of our contradictions as repulsion and welcoming, nonviolence and arrogance, we realize the desire to follow Jesus, we should be careful not to step down as it happened to the mentioned three persons. The first one offers himself, but the richness stop him; the second has been called but he wishes to solve his problems, not thinking that the problems will endure trough all life; the third one is tied up, he would like to follow Jesus as a showing up, but the necessity to greet friends and relatives shelters him in order to say: ‘I would like, but the people close to me have dissuaded me from doing that.’ When we shall end to charge parents, things and society? If I don’t commit myself the problem it’s me, not the others. When will come the day when, taking our responsibility, we shall walk with Jesus, with resolution , towards Jerusalem and building up the kingdom of God?
Fr. Ottavio Raimondo Comboni missionary 348-2991393