32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

My Dear People,


In the First Book of Kings, Elijah goes to Zarephath to a widow, and even though she had nothing, she baked a cake for him. She thought that she and her son would die because it had not rained for a long time, and they had no more food. But because of her generosity towards the prophet Elijah, she was blessed, and her jar of flour did not go empty. Neither did her jug of oil run dry until the Lord sent rain on the earth. 

The miracle of the multiplication of the oil and flour, and the raising back to life of a widow’s only son are the second and third accounts of acts of the Lord’s power through Elijah. He has already caused the drought; Ahab’s sin brought suffering for the people of Israel. Elijah’s fidelity brings nourishment, as does the woman’s faith.   Here we observe that the faith of the widow made a huge difference.  During the time of drought, Elijah went to no one but to the widow in Zarephath.  He remained with her the whole time the drought was in Israel.

The faith of this widow made a difference. Because of her faith, she was chosen by the prophet Elijah. Similarly, Jesus observes the widow who places only pennies into the temple treasury, and He remarks that she gave more than the rest.  Why? She gave from her means, meanwhile, even though others gave a much greater amount, they gave from their surplus. The value of the offering lies more in the upright intention and generosity of spirit than in the quantity one gives. What you give is not as important as the intention behind the giving. 

St. Francis de Sales comments:  “Now as amongst the treasures of the temple, the poor widow's mite was much esteemed, and as indeed, by the addition of many little pieces treasures become great, and their value increases, so the least little good works, even though performed somewhat coldly, and not according to the whole extent of the charity which is in us, are agreeable to God, and esteemed by him; in such sort that though of themselves they cannot cause any increase in the existing love, being of less force than it, yet the divine Providence, counting, and out of his goodness, valuing them, forthwith rewards them with increase of charity for the present, and assigns to them a greater heavenly glory for the future.”  (Treatise of love of God,  book 3, chap 2)


Sincerely yours,

Fr. Vincent Clemente



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