We are sad to hear in the News that there are some terminally-ill patients have chosen to end their lives early and some others even went to the extent of shifting to another State where Euthanasia is legalized; where “The Death with Dignity Law” has been enacted.
What the Church says?
Based on the “Declaration on Euthanasia, Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, May 5, 1980”, Chapter III, paragraph 4:
“According to Christian teaching, however, suffering, especially suffering during the last moments of life, has a special place in God's saving plan; it is in fact a sharing in Christ's passion and a union with the redeeming sacrifice which He offered in obedience to the Father's will. Therefore, one must not be surprised if some Christians prefer to moderate their use of painkillers, in order to accept voluntarily at least a part of their sufferings and thus associate themselves in a conscious way with the sufferings of Christ crucified (cf. Matthew 27:34). Nevertheless it would be imprudent to impose a heroic way of acting as a general rule. On the contrary, human and Christian prudence suggest for the majority of sick people the use of medicines capable of alleviating or suppressing pain, even though these may cause as a secondary effect semi-consciousness and reduced lucidity. As for those who are not in a state to express themselves, one can reasonably presume that they wish to take these painkillers, and have them administered according to the doctor's advice.”
Saint Paul also says: “[ Paul’s Labour for the Church ] Now I rejoice in what I am suffering for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church.”
We just hope that if you are being called by the Lord to be one of His co-redeemers, do not let this pass you by. Offer your suffering to Him for the conversion of the World, the repentance of poor sinners and other noble intentions. You know the World is not right and many are suffering as innocent victims in wars and also in the financial and business world. You are doing a great work and by offering this suffering to God, you have allowed His abundant mercy to pour upon the human race.
As for others who are serving our noble brothers and sisters, let’s do it with love and cooperate fully with God in His redeeming actions.
One day, when it is time He calls me back, what I want to hear from Him is:
‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ (cf. Matthew 25:21).
18 October 2014
Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, First Reading:
Extracted from the prophet Isaiah 5:1-7
Let me sing to my friend the song of his love for his vineyard.
My friend had a vineyard on a fertile hillside.
He dug the soil, cleared it of stones and planted choice vines in it.
In the middle he built a tower, he dug a press there too.
He expected it to yield grapes, but sour grapes were all that it gave.
And now, inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah,
I ask you to judge between my vineyard and me.
What could I have done for my vineyard that I have not done?
I expected it to yield grapes. Why did it yield sour grapes instead?
Very well, I will tell you what I am going to do to my vineyard:
I will take away its hedge for it to be grazed on, and knock down its wall for it to be trampled on.
I will lay it waste, unpruned, undug; overgrown by the briar and the thorn.
I will command the clouds to rain no rain on it.
Yes, the vineyard of the Lord of Hosts is the House of Israel,
and the men of Judah that chosen plant.
He expected justice, but found bloodshed,
integrity, but only a cry of distress.
Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Responsorial: Psalm 80:9,12-16,19-20
Response: The vineyard of the Lord is the house of Israel.
You brought a vine out of Egypt; to plant it you drove out the nations.
It stretched out its branches to the sea, to the Great River it stretched out its shoots.
Then why have you broken down its walls? It is plucked by all who pass by.
It is ravaged by the boar of the forest, devoured by the beasts of the field.
God of hosts, turn again, we implore, look down from heaven and see.
Visit this vine and protect it, the vine your right hand has planted.
And we shall never forsake you again; give us life that we may call upon your name.
God of hosts, bring us back; let your face shine on us and we shall be saved.
Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Second Reading:
Extracted from the letter of Saint Paul to the Philippians 4:6-9
There is no need to worry; but if there is anything you need, pray for it, asking God for it with prayer and thanksgiving, and that peace of God, which is so much greater than we can understand, will guard your hearts and your thoughts, in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers, fill your minds with everything that is true, everything that is noble, everything that is good and pure, everything that we love and honour, and everything that can be thought virtuous or worthy of praise.
Keep doing all the things that you learnt from me and have been taught by me and have heard or seen that I do. Then the God of peace will be with you.
I call you friends, says the Lord,
because I have made known to you everything I have learnt from my Father.
I chose you from the world to go out and bear fruit,
fruit that will last, says the Lord.
Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Gospel Reading: Extracted from the holy Gospel according to Matthew 21:33-43
Jesus said to the chief priests and the elders of the people, ‘Listen to another parable.
There was a man, a landowner, who planted a vineyard; he fenced it round, dug a winepress in it and built a tower; then he leased it to tenants and went abroad.
When vintage time drew near he sent his servants to the tenants to collect his produce. But the tenants seized his servants, thrashed one, killed another and stoned a third.
Next he sent some more servants, this time a larger number, and they dealt with them in the same way.
Finally he sent his son to them. “They will respect my son” he said. But when the tenants saw the son, they said to each other, “This is the heir. Come on, let us kill him and take over his inheritance.” So they seized him and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him.
Now when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?’
They answered, ‘He will bring those wretches to a wretched end and lease the vineyard to other tenants who will deliver the produce to him when the season arrives.’
Jesus said to them, ‘Have you never read in the scriptures:
It was the stone rejected by the builders that became the keystone.
This was the Lord’s doing and it is wonderful to see?
‘I tell you, then, that the kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit.’