25th Sunday of Ordinary Time (commentary).

The readings of this 25th Sunday fit so well to the recent Jewish festivals that approach us and nothing prevents us as Christians from entering their approach.

The first reading (Is 55: 6-10) allows Jewish tradition to illustrate the sequence of these festivals.

Seek the Lord while he is able to be found, invoke him while he is near. This is the favorable time for Rosh Hashana, when the Jewish people are in front of their Creator. In His light, he sees the light, and he does not fear, for in Him is the source of life (cf. Ps 36:10). Let the wicked abandon his way and the criminal man his thoughts, let him return to the Lord. It is when he decides to make good use of the ten days that separate him from Kippur to turn to the Lord in the teshuva (conversion of the heart).

“Let him return to the Lord” who will have mercy on him, for he is merciful when he forgives. This is what will happen on the day of Kippur, the day when the Lord seals his followers in the book of life.

Psalm 145 repeats the definition that God gives about himself, in Ex 34: 6. “Lord, Lord, God of tenderness and mercy, slow to anger and full of love… This refrain  will be repeated constantly from Rosh HaShana until the day of Kippur.

As to the Gospel, it illustrates the end of Isaiah’s passage very well: “My ways are not your ways, and my thoughts are not your thoughts … For the righteousness of God is harmoniously combined with His gifts, and no one should look with an evil eye because his tenderness is for all his works. Jesus humanly personifies this God always ready to forgive, even apparently weak and unjust according to our thoughts. He invites us in this parable to be grateful for his kindness to all (cf. Ps 145), the first and the last, the poor as well as the rich, sinners and righteous… but who deserves to be called righteous?

by Sr. Anne-Catherine Avril, NDS.

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