Sunday, September 4, 2011

Labor of Love

On this Labor Day, we reflect on the words of Christ: "I ask you, is it lawful to do good rather than to do evil, to save life rather than to destroy it?" The question remained unanswered. How do we answer the question?

Today we recall the life of Blessed Mother Teresa. On September 5, 1997, Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta entered eternal life. Throughout her life she lived this question. She never tired of speaking of human dignity from the moment of conception until natural death. But she spoke more with her works of mercy, her deeds of kindness, and her labor of love.

We are not all called to live the life of a Mother Teresa, but we are called to defend the sanctity of human life - not only from the moment of conception, but through all stages of life.

St. John Chrysostom wrote: "Do you wish to honor the Body of Christ? Then do not disdain Him when you see Him in rags. After having honored Him in Church with silken vestments, do not leave Him to die of cold outside for lack of clothing. For it is the same Jesus Who says, “This is My Body” and Who says “I was hungry but you would not feed Me. Whenever you refused to help one of these least important ones, you refused to help me.”

Pope Gregory the Great said, “When we attend to the needs of those in want, we give them what is theirs, not ours. More than performing works of mercy, we are paying a debt of justice.”

So how do we answer the question: Is it lawful to save life rather than to destroy it?

We have work to do. Yet if we do it for God, it will be a labor of love.

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