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23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time 2019

Reflection: Aidan Troy, C.P.

‘Disciple’, a word in today’s Gospel of St Luke, did not end back then in the time of Jesus. The danger is that I can read the Gospels in the past tense. Jesus speaks to us now, in the present and has not changed His message of choosing us to be Disciples.

Many parishes, especially St Joseph’s Paris, are blessed with a great variety of callings. A listing of the variety of ways of being disciples would fill this Bulletin and for the rest of the year.

You are a disciple of Jesus in a way in which no other person on earth is called to be one. God chose you from the beginning of creation to be you and to serve in this world, in His church, in a totally unique way. Nobody else who ever existed, lives now or ever will live, has the calling that is yours. Don’t panic! The Holy Spirit is directing you; in Eternity you will see the full beauty and greatness to which you have been called.

Not only has God called you by name – great though this is – He has branded you on the palms of His hands. When He looks at you, He has your name on His hands. He is looking at you, not to catch you out, but because as a lover, He can’t take His eyes off you. You’re a special disciple.

That is why we are called to love each other, to love creation and to love God. That is the basis of us being disciples – created in love, called to live in love and to spend eternity in Heaven plumbing the depths of God as the deepest meaning of love. God loves us so much and He makes up for all left undone by my sins.    

Jealousy and envy of others are futile as well as sinful. Others can be our heroes, showing us what we can achieve. Jesus took the child as model for us of Kingdom discipleship.

A child has no earthly power and is dependent for all on parents or caregivers. Children can fall asleep in the arms of parents because, besides being tired, they know that they are safe. They know at the deepest level, but cannot articulate it, that they belong to someone who loves them.

That is how I would always like to be with God. He has created me to belong to Him and shown that He died for me so that I will live forever with Him. That is truly amazing and puts me on my knees to say ‘thanks’ in prayers. In the Mass, He has given us the perfect prayer of Thanksgiving.

If you are a married disciple, you know what love can do for people. If you are single or out of relationship, your discipleship call is to love, even if by a different expression.

Parents are disciples who model for their children who God is, and what love is about. Carers who give their all for others, are disciples of the highest order. The poor have often had a tough hand dealt by life. But their very poverty, while not acceptable, leaves them totally uncluttered and knowing that God sends people who love them and care for them.

Heroic women and men who take religious vows live and are doers of the Word of Love. They are essential to the holiness of the Body of Christ. Finally, priests with all our faults and failings do our best as disciples of love and service. Please pray for us.


Saint Joseph's Catholic Church
50 Avenue Hoche
75008 Paris, France
33(0)1 42 27 28 56

Designed by Bruno Valades