Sunday 31 July 2022
18th Sunday in Ordinary Time; St Ignatius of Loyola
Ecclesiastes 1:2; 2:21-23. In every age, O Lord, you have been our refuge – Psalm 89(90):3-6, 12-14, 17. Colossians 3:1-5, 9-11. Luke 12:13-21.
Fool! This very night your soul will be demanded of you
How Much Land Does a Man Need? is a short story by Tolstoy about a peasant named Pahom who amasses more and more land. Pahom always thinks that the next deal will be the one that assuages his need. The story ends with Pahom’s death and his servant burying him in a grave of only six feet – an answer to the question. Long before Tolstoy, today’s readings warn of the futility of amassing goods for the sake of it. In Luke, the man he hoards his wealth cannot take it with him when he dies, which is sooner than he thinks. In both the first and second readings the reader is urged to look for the things that are in heaven and put aside the things that belong only to earthly life … ‘especially greed, which is the same as worshipping a false god’ (Colossians 3:5). Today is the feast day of St Ignatius of Loyola whose spirituality is summed up in the phrase ‘Finding God in all things’. God, a I go about my tasks today, let me find you in all I do and give me the courage to make myself rich in your sight.