A Note From Fr. Eickhoff

September 18, 2022

Try to imagine how the prophet Amos (the author of today’s First Reading) would describe the indifference, yes, even the callousness of so many people in our society today.

Perhaps it would read something like this:

“Hear this, you who trample upon the needy…you are like a driver stopped at a signal waiting impatiently for the light to turn green.  You honk your horn, rev your engine, and the instant the light changes color you speed through the intersection heedless of whether a car or a pedestrian is still in your way.”

Or maybe it would read something like this:

“Hear this, you who trample upon the needy…you are like a commentator on a website who is determined to destroy another person.  You say to yourself “when will we be able to post against our foe?”  Even though you do not know the person’s real name.  You think “we will destroy him, we will drive him out of society, we will get his employer to fire him, we will leave him with nothing but his misery.” And you plan to do all this even though the person has never harmed you.”

Sometimes we think that the situations described in Holy Scripture no longer apply to us.  We imagine that we are different from people two thousand years ago or more.  We think that we have “evolved” or that our technology has changed the situation so much that the Scriptures are no longer relevant to us.  This is false.  Human nature has not changed.  We are just as capable of mercy or hatred as people two thousand years ago or more.  Even today there are those persons so focused on their own gain that they ignore the plight of other people. And these persons are not necessarily some special breed of evildoers.  No, all of us are capable of acting in this way if we are not mindful of the consequences of our thoughts and actions.  It is wise of us to keep the words of the prophet Amos in mind so that we do not fall into the trap of acting in such a way that harms or ruins another human being.

Yours in Christ,

Fr. Stephen Eickhoff