Speak Lord: Servant King

Sacred Heart Maryvale 2.jpg

I am a great king, says the Lord of Hosts, and my name is feared throughout the nations. And now, priests, this warning is for you. If you do not listen, if you do not find it in your heart to glorify my name, says the Lord of Hosts, I will send the curse on you and curse your very blessing. But you, you have strayed from the way; you have caused many to stumble by your teaching. You have destroyed the covenant of Levi, says the Lord of Hosts. And so I in my turn have made you contemptible and vile in the eyes of the whole people in repayment for the way you have not kept to my paths but have shown partiality in your administration.

Have we not all one Father? Did not one God create us? Why, then, do we break faith with one another, profaning the covenant of our ancestors?

First reading for 31st Sunday in Ordinary Time
Malachi 1:14-2:2,8-10

The warning to priests here, is a warning to all those with power and authority. It is a reminder of how power is entrusted by God to men and women to be used for the betterment of others, to promote their dignity and to promote their independence and development.

The abuse of power to exploit, plunder and for self-gratification is abhorent to God.

The revelation of God to Israel, that flounders in the people’s sad experience of kingship and kings, comes to it fulfilment in the Incarnation, and  in the ministry of Jesus, Jesus was anointed Prophet, Priest and King, and served in this ministries for the salvation of the world.

Sacred Heart Maryvale Institute. (c) 2015, Allen Morris


Speak Lord: Direct us, rule us…


Thus says the Lord to his anointed, to Cyrus,
whom he has taken by his right hand
to subdue nations before him
and strip the loins of kings,
to force gateways before him
that their gates be closed no more:

‘It is for the sake of my servant Jacob,
of Israel my chosen one,
that I have called you by your name,
conferring a title though you do not know me.
I am the Lord, unrivalled;
there is no other God besides me.
Though you do not know me, I arm you
that men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun
that, apart from me, all is nothing.’

First reading for the 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Isaiah 45:1,4-6

The Lord finds his chosen in unexpected places – shepherds, a dresser of sycamores, and a pagan king, just for example.

Cyrus, the pagan king, serves the Lord by restoring his people to their homeland from which they had been ripped and taken into exile.

All human power and dignity derives from God’s power and glory. All human power and dignity finds its final purpose in being used for good and for love. And when it is, and when we recognise it and honour it, something more of God’s purpose is recognised: there is a new unity found in a broken world, and in the fragmentation of the human family.

Whoever does good, and wherever, does the will of God and advances the dawning of the Kingdom of God.

Window commemorating Diamond Jubilee of Elizabeth II. Southwark Cathedral, London. (c) 2016.