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A daily choice… this or that… which will we do?


by Fr Alban FSDM

Today, being Remembrance Sunday we join with the whole country in commemorating the dead of past conflicts particularly the two World Wars. But today we remember also those who died when they came together to do as we are today. We remember the dead of the Poppy Day Bomb in Enniskillen, County Fermanagh in 1987.

The rural Ulster town saw many people gather at its War Memorial to remember like us the dead of past conflicts. No one expected it to end in the way that it did. For that day, a bomb exploded inside the Reading Rooms causing the wall to be blown out and hurl masonry at the gathered crowd. Eleven people were killed that day, ten civilians and one police officer. But what has this got to do with the readings that we heard this morning at Mass?

Each of us has choices to make before we do any action. The widow in the Gospel had a choice, did she give the few coins she had in her purse or did she not? She gave more than she could afford, but she did so devoutly. Likewise, the widow who made food for Elijah soon found that her action in doing so brought a miraculous event. Her jar of flour did not go empty, nor the jug of oil run dry.

So too, as of each of us makes our own choices about what we do, we should bear in mind that each choice brings its own consequences. Those responsible for the Poppy Day Bombing have never been brought before the courts of the country. But neither have they got away free. Their consciences will be pricked from time to time. Which of us can say that we have not felt our conscience tell us we have done something wrong?

When we do something wrong we are committing a sin. For we are turning away from God. The Epistle makes clear that through the sacrifice at Calvary when our blessed Lord died to take away sin by his sacrifice we know that when he comes again he will salvation to those who eagerly await him. We can show our eagerness in awaiting him by following his commands particularly those that we heard in last week’s gospel. If only those responsible for those tragic events twenty-five years ago in Enniskillen had thought about Jesus’s words — Love the Lord your God with all your heart and  with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. and love your neighbour as yourself. we may not be remembering them today. I pray that we all make our choices carefully, and be prepared to find that the one which seems impossible today may have the best outcome in the time to come.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

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