Sunday Reflection:For the Pharisees, working during the Sabbath was a matter of life and death. Jesus’ priority was the people. To emphasize his convictions, Jesus asked the Pharisees, “Is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the Sabbath, to save or to kill?” He then healed before them the man whose hand was withered. Jewish law was clear: to heal was to work, and medical attention could only be given to those whose lives were endangered. The man with the withered hand could have waited, but Jesus would not allow another day of suffering for the man.
Jesus’ act is a demonstration of the purpose of our liturgy; the integral reason behind the external acts at the altar every Sunday. We could be steeped in elaborate rituals and colorful expressions of our faith, but if we remain blind and deaf to the plight of those who clamor for love and to the tears of those who are afflicted, we are as good as an empty church—we are a hollow excuse.
Jesus’ life was centered on service, a spontaneous and sacrificial call to challenge the bounds of religious legalism, a mission to make people’s lives new and to respond to them in their need. To him, the next ministry opportunity would begin with the next person he met.
- How would you define religious legalism? How could we prevent ourselves from falling into a church of “dos and don’ts”?
- In this Season of Pentecost, how could you respond to human need in loving service as enshrined in the Anglican Five Marks of Mission? (From Sermon that Works)
Praise be to our Father who is in heaven who have blessed us in the heavenly realms with spiritual blessings in Christ and guidance from the Holy Spirit.
I feel blessed to write to you to say thank you for the support you have given this ministry and to our parish congregation.
While I was away, your support both morally and spiritually was much appreciated to make sure that our mission reaches all those that God want us to reach. Thank you for your prayers of safe travel for my family and the warm welcome you all gave me.
Keep on praying for our ministry so that the will of God can be manifested in us as we preach the gospel to all corners of the world.
God bless you and thank you.
Yours in the Lord,
The Venerable Louie Engnan, Rector