Fr Joseph began his homily. “There are two thoughts that struck me when I was reflecting on the gospel for today. One is obviously about forgiveness and reconciliation. I can see it almost as in a business matter where you have to go to arbitration to resolve your differences. That is serious stuff and I know that happens in families too. The other thought that struck me is that Jesus says that if your brother doesn’t listen to you or to the Church you should treat him like a Gentile or a tax collector. That strikes me as quite judgemental, racist even but that was clearly a normal thing in his day. I believe we have come a long way since then when it comes to discrimination and even hate speech. If Jesus was alive and here with us now what would he have to say?”
If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. If he refuses to listen even to the Church let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. Matthew 18:15-20.
Pope Francis. Many things have to change course, but it is we human beings above all who need to change. We lack an awareness of our common origin, of our mutual belonging, and of a future to be shared with everyone. LS 202.