Reflections and Perspectives

Welcome! Reflections, Testimonials, and Perspectives for St. Mary Magdalen are offered by our priests, deacons, parishioners, and others as guest writers. We will offer a Sunday Reflection as well as other topics. 

  • Deacon Anthony Cincotta

Tuesday of the Thirty-Third Week in Ordinary Time

Memorial Feast: Saint Margaret of Scotland—(1045+1093) Patron Saint for Service to the Poor

2 Maccabees 6:18-31, Psalm 3:2-3, 4-5, 6-8, & Luke 19:1-10

'Zacchaeus' by Niels Larsen Stevns

A great ending to a good story—that's today's Gospel narrative in a nutshell. Luke adds a bit of comic relief as he writes about the chief tax collector, Zacchaeus, and his shortness, as well as his persistence in getting a glimpse of the man everyone is talking about, called Jesus. It is not about Zacchaeus' physical stature but his moral uprightness. He is a wealthy tax collector who is made so by exploiting the people in his jurisdiction, which is where the story's tension builds. Jesus is happy to see him and, further, elects to dine with him. Once again, Jesus defies the conformists' expectations. However, look at the results—a conversion of heart. Zacchaeus pledges to right his wrongs and to do so in ways "fourfold."

Friends, here is the invitation of the day—Conversion, at any level.

Luke's narration is not gratuitous, for it reveals a change of heart when we least expect it. It almost seems as though Jesus did not have to do all that much, at least in the immediate context. It was Zacchaeus' life, stirring within him in a desire to do the right thing. The desire of our lives, those of goodness and integrity, are such good evidence for God's work in the world, but more so within each of us, molding us like the potter molds his clay.

God provides us with desires, continuing to call us to help him make the world a place more receptive to His good grace. We see this reality with our new friend Zacchaeus today, but more poignantly, we see it as conversion, as a change of routine, as an honoring of desires stirring deep inside us. Today, we have a great story to ponder.

Question of the Day: Will you, like Zacchaeus, climb down from the tree and stand on "solid ground?"

Prayer: "Greater love has no one than to lay down his life for his friends."



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