“Do not give what is holy to dogs; and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under foot and turn and maul you. “In everything do to others as you would have them do to you; for this is the law and the prophets. “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road is easy that leads to destruction, and there are many who take it. For the gate is narrow and the road is hard that leads to life, and there are few who find it.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Why is it so hard for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God?
On retreat earlier this month, I learned a possible answer: Jesus can save all of us — and he wants to — but we have to let him. Often we try to save ourselves with our money, our talents, or our hard work. We begin to think we don’t need God. So, our retreat leader asked, “Are we poor enough to let Christ save us?”
St. Aloysius Gonzaga was born into a royal family; he renounced his inheritance and became a Jesuit. Six years later he died caring for plague victims. He could say, with Peter, “We have given up everything and followed you.” He could also affirm, with Peter, that his decision brought both persecutions and rewards.
On this feast day, let us ask ourselves: Are we poor enough to let Christ work in our lives?
O Holy Mary, my mother, into your blessed trust and custody, and into the care of your mercy,
I this day, every day, and in the hour of my death, commend my soul and body.
To you I commit all my anxieties and miseries, my life and end of my life.
By your most holy intercession and by your merits may all my actions
be directed and disposed according to your will and that of your Son. Amen.
—St. Aloysius Gonzaga, S.J.