Categories: HomiliesPublished On: October 25th, 2020Tags: , , 682 words20.7 min read

Here are links to our readings for the day:

What Is Real?

Finally! A real question is asked of Jesus. What is the greatest commandment? Jesus responds by combining two commandments. Love God with all your heart and your neighbor as yourself. None of the commandments by itself is new, but putting them together gives us a new vision of Jesus’ teachings. For the Jewish people, several times a day they recite the verse, “You will love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your mind”. But now adding the commandment to love your neighbor as yourself places a new emphasis on how you should answer and force the question of who your neighbor is.

The Jewish people thought their neighbor was only the immediate family. With the parable of the Good Samaritan, we know that it is no longer appropriate, but let us look at our family. It begins with husband and wife. You may say they should be more than neighbors, of course, but the commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself. We have to review how a husband and wife treat each other. God must be the center of marriage. Then the husband and wife must love each other in the same way they want to be loved. Love is an act of will, not an emotion. Emotions flare up/erupt, such as anger, envy, or lust. Love in a marriage is the way you work to love your spouse as you want to be loved. In a marriage, a man and a wife need to learn to be intimate without being sexual. A couple should be comfortable and understanding of each other, without wanting to criticize or punish. They should be willing to work to solve the problems together. Frustration is another emotion that causes stress in a marriage. You don’t like it when people get frustrated with you, why would you allow that emotion to dominate how you feel toward your spouse?

And the children? We like to say we love our children, but our children need something more. Your love is great, but they want to be absorbed into the love you and your spouse share. Understand that your marriage in Christ is the first thing. Then your children.

Neighbors extend outside the family. God gave us something called natural law. In simple terms, it is “doing good and avoiding evil”. Doing good for our neighbors means you must love your neighbor as you love yourself. Do you want people to insult you/call you names? Do you want people to say negative things, invent lies about you, discredit you? Why do you think people do these things? Because it gives them authority and power. If you want to have authority and power over someone, you have to degrade that person, become bigger than them. Why is there abortion? Because we can call the child in the womb a blob/amorphous mass, something that is not human, that they do not have the ability to reason, or cannot live outside the uterus. Obviously, they are not human, so we can destroy it. Why do we have racism? Because people of color are not human, they are more like animals, they cannot reason or think. We are superior to them, so people of color have no rights. Why do we have division in our lives and in our culture? Because someone is always trying to demonstrate or prove that they are better than the other person. We insult each other, we tell others that they are incompetent, cannot reason, they are too old to be useful and the list goes on.

Love our neighbor as one’s self. If someone treated you as just described, how would you accept it? This would be a great week to be aware of how you treat others.

May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Fr Ed Anderson
Email: fatheredanderson[at]
Phone: 715.817.3736

St. Joseph Church – Rice Lake
Holy Trinity – Haugen
St. John the Evangelist – Birchwood
Our Lady of Lourdes – Dobie

Fr Ed Anderson