“To what then will I compare the people of this generation, and what are they like? They are like children sitting in the marketplace and calling to one another, ‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we wailed, and you did not weep.’ For John the Baptist has come eating no bread and drinking no wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon’; the Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look, a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ Nevertheless, wisdom is vindicated by all her children.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved. http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translation
Today we commemorate two friends—Cornelius and Cyprian—who gave their lives struggling to unify the Church against opposing voices.
Elected pope in 251, St. Cornelius spent two years protecting the Church against Roman persecution and internal schism until he was exiled by the emperor Gallus and died. Saint Cyprian, who was born to wealthy pagans, converted at the age of 56 and became a bishop whose defense of Cornelius and theological writings made him both a martyr and a Church Father.
Long before Cornelius and Cyprian, Jesus struggled to share the Good News with people who could not—or would not—listen. In Luke’s account, Jesus is struck by the people’s lack of openness and compares them to petulant children. These “children” lack eyes to see and ears to hear what John the Baptist and Jesus are revealing about the Kingdom of God.
But, Jesus says, “wisdom is vindicated by all her children.”
So, how can we be children of wisdom? Awe and gratitude are always good places to start!
—Jeremy Langford is the director of communications for the Midwest Jesuits and author of Seeds of Faith: Practices to Grow a Healthy Spiritual Life ©2007 Paraclete Press, Brewster, MA.
Lord, sometimes we place negative labels on people we don’t understand, who threaten our views, or call forth a change in us. Help us to pierce through our prejudging by truly listening, by evaluating if people are helped, healed, welcomed, or accepted. Lord, grant us courage and the wisdom to see in others – all others – your own creation and love.
—The Jesuit Prayer TeamPlease share the Good Word with your friends!