St Januarius, Bishop & martyr
24th Week in Ordinary Time : Tuesday 19th September 2023
1 Tim. 3:1-13; Ps. 100:1-3,5-6;
Lk. 7:11-17 (Ps. Wk. IV)
These instructions to bishops from the First Letter to Timothy were written at a time long before celibacy became obligatory for priests in the Church. The writer naturally thinks of a parallel between how a man cared for his own family and how he ought to care for the Church.
Though we live in a very different situation, there is a great deal to be learned by our modern Church from this passage, especially given the scandals that have hurt us these last few years. “A bishop must be irreproachable”, and what is said of the bishop can be said of every priest, deacon and religious.
Indeed, every Christian should live an irreproachable life, as other Letters of the New Testament remind us. After profound doctrinal discussion, many of Paul’s Letters turn to the earthly reality of the Christian’s life in the world, the family and society.
What a better world we would live in if every Christian were irreproachable, good-tempered, self-controlled, modest, hospitable, gentle and peace-loving!
May all the Saints in Heaven pray for us and obtain for us the grace to lead good and holy lives in this world for the greater honour and glory of God and the salvation of all humanity.