Theme of the Sunday: God, Friend of the Poor. The people of Israel looked on the rich as people blessed by God. The first reading attacks them because they lead lazy; useless lives. People choose to stay on the side of the rich. The gospel today tells us that God stands with the poor and the outcasts. He consider them his friends and gives names to those who are insignificant in human eyes, the forgotten. He demand justice for them here in this world. The second reading is linked to this theme because it denounces the lust for wealth as the cause of all evil.
A reading from the Book of the Prophet Amos (Amos 6:1a, 4-7)
“The revelry of those who stretch themselves shall pass away.”
Thus says the Lord almighty; “Woe to those who are at ease in Zion, and to those who feel secure on the mountain of Samaria. “Woe to those who lie upon beds of ivory, and stretch themselves upon their couches, and eat lambs from the flock, and calves from the midst of the stall; who sing idle songs to the sound of the harp, and like David invent for themselves instruments of music; who drink wine in bowls, and anoint themselves with the finest oils, but are not grieved over the ruin of Joseph! Therefore they shall now be the first of those to go into exile, and the revelry of those who stretch themselves shall pass away.”
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSAL Psalm 146:6c-7.8-9a.9bc-10 (R. lb)
R/. My soul, give praise to the Lord!
It is the Lord who preserves fidelity forever,
who does justice to those who are oppressed.
It is he who gives bread to the hungry,
the Lord who sets prisoners free. R/.
It is the Lord who opens the eyes of the blind,
the Lord who raises up those who are bowed down.
It is the Lord Who loves the just,
the Lord who protects the stranger. R/.
The Lord upholds the orphan and the widow,
but thwarts the path of the wicked.
The Lord will reign forever,
the God of Sion from age to age. R/.
A reading from the first Letter of Saint Paul to Timothy (1 Timothy 6: l I—16)
“Keep the commandment until the appearing of the Lord.”
O Man of God, aim at righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. In the presence of God who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, I charge you to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ; and this will be made manifest at the proper time by the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no man has ever seen or can see. To him be honour and eternal dominion. Amen.
The word of the Lord.
ALLELUIA 2 Corinthians 8:9
Alleluia. Though Jesus Christ was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich. Alleluia.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (Luke 16: 19-31)
“You in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things, but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish.”
At that time: Jesus said to the Pharisees, “There was a rich man, who was clothed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, full of sores, who desired to be fed with what fell from the rich man’s table; moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried; and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes, and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus in his bosom. And he called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy upon me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in anguish in this flame.’ “But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who would pass from here to you may not be able, and none may cross from there to us.’ And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father’s house, for I have five brothers, so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.’ But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. ’And he said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if some one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ “He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced if some one should rise from the dead.”’
The Gospel of the Lord.
Prophet Amos and Jesus echo the same message today: those who are unmindful and insensitive to the plight of the poor and needy in this world will be severely punished in the next. There will be a reversal of fortunes: “Son, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish.” The poor who suffer hunger and pain in this world will be compensated or rewarded in the next. The rich man in today’s Gospel is so comfortable in his own luxury that he does not notice the plight of the suffering Lazarus, who never even exists for him. Prophet Amos says of the rich: “Woe to those who lie on beds of ivory, stretch themselves out on their couches, and eat lambs from the flock.” According to Pope Francis, “if we truly wish to encounter Christ, we have to touch his body in the suffering bodies of the poor, as a response to the sacramental communion bestowed in the Eucharist.”