Thought for the Day – 25 August – 21st Sunday of the Year in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 13:22–30
“Strive to enter in by the narrow door.”
St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Father & Doctor
This reply may seem perhaps to wander from the scope of the question. The man wanted to learn whether there would be few who are saved but He explained to him the way whereby he might be saved himself. He said, “Strive to enter in by the narrow door.” What do we answer to this objection? … It was a necessary and valuable thing to know how a man may obtain salvation. He is purposely silent to the useless question. He proceeds to speak of what was essential, namely, of the knowledge necessary for the performance of those duties by which people can enter the narrow door.
I now consider it my duty to mention why the door to life is narrow. Whoever would enter must first, before everything else, possess an upright and uncorrupted faith and then a spotless morality, in which there is no possibility of blame, according to the measure of human righteousness. One who has attained to this in mind and spiritual strength will enter easily by the narrow door and run along the narrow way.
“Wide is the door and broad the way that brings down many to destruction.” What are we to understand by its broadness? It means an unrestrained tendency toward carnal lust and a shameful and pleasure-loving life. It is luxurious feasts, parties, banquets and unrestricted inclinations to everything that is condemned by the law and displeasing to God. A stubborn mind will not bow to the yoke of the law. This life is cursed and relaxed in all carelessness. Thrusting from it the divine law and completely unmindful of the sacred commandments, wealth, vices, scorn, pride and the empty imagination of earthly pride spring from it. Those who would enter in by the narrow door must withdraw from all these things, be with Christ and keep the festival with Him.”
(Commentary on Luke, Homily 9)
May we call upon our Mother Mary as Ianua Caeli, Heaven’s Gate, to guide us in our daily choices and take us to the path that leads to ‘Heaven’s Gate.’ Amen