On this 16th Sunday of Ordinary Time (the counted weeks of the liturgical year), the first (Hebrew Scripture) reading and the Gospel both speak about shepherds. I expect we might hear homilies about this theme. The second reading is from Ephesians. In the context where we find ourselves as U.S. people, it is especially challenging. The Ephesians were non-Jews or Gentiles, and the Jews were keepers of the covenant. The blood of Christ has united them, bringing peace to both groups. Christ broke down the dividing wall of enmity through his flesh. How did this occur? Because “the law with its commandments and legal claims” was abolished, freeing the Jewish converts from concern about the many laws of Judaism, and permitting non-Jews to become Christians without first becoming Jews. Of course we cannot apply this Scripture directly to the situation of immigration, “the wall,” and a path to citizenship. But this Scripture makes me uneasy. I picture the Lord standing at the wall. He is not smiling. It is up to us to work with each other and our government to reach better solutions, I think!
— Blog entry by Sister Mary Garascia