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Gospel for Sunday, October 2 Luke 17: 5-10

XXVII Sunday C

5The apostles said to the Lord: 6«Increase our faith!». The Lord replied: “If you had faith like a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree: Be uprooted and transplanted into the sea, and it will listen to you. 7Which of you, if he has a servant to plow or graze the flock, will say to him when he returns from the field: Come quickly and sit at table? 8Will he not rather say to him: Prepare something for me to eat, and roll up your robe, and serve me, until I have eaten and drunk, and after that you too will eat and drink? 9Will he consider himself obligated towards his servant, because he followed the orders received? 10So you too, when you have done all that was commanded you, say: We are useless servants. We did what we had to do”.

Luke 17: 5-10

Dear Sisters and Brothers of the Misericordie, I am Carlo Miglietta, doctor, biblical scholar, layman, husband, father and grandfather (

Also today I share with you a short meditation thought on the Gospel, with special reference to the theme of mercy.

The first theme that today’s Gospel presents to us is that of the importance of Faith. The prayer of the apostles is also the cry that rises from the depths of each of us: “Lord, increase our Faith!”. Jesus reiterates that if we have faith our life can change completely, endowing itself with infinite power.

There are two Jewish terms that describe faith: ‘aman (hence the participial form “amen”), which evokes firmness, certainty; batah, trust and reliance. In Greek, ‘aman corresponds to pistis, pisteuo, alètheia (Volg.: fides, crede, veritas); batah corresponds to elpìs, elpìzo, pèithomai-pèpoitha (Vulg.: spes, to hope, I trust).

Therefore faith essentially has two dimensions: the adhesion of the intelligence to the truth, the certainty that only God establishes reality (“fides quae”), and the trusting abandonment to God, fully trusting in him, totally entrusting oneself to him (“fides qua”), because he is God “of faithfulness” (Dt 32,4).

‘Aman is a term used to indicate the adhesion of the belt to the abdomen of the person wearing it: therefore for the believer it essentially means clinging to God, clinging to him, sticking to him, like a mussel on the rock. Faith therefore means clinging to God, girding oneself around him.

If my life is truly entirely founded on God, a God who never abandons me, who is always with me, who always walks with me, and in whom I can therefore fully trust, aware that his faithfulness will never end and always will accompany me, then my life becomes beautiful, full, serene, despite difficulties, illnesses, suffering, anguish, aging, death. If I can have Faith as large as a mustard seed, “the smallest of all the seeds on earth” (Mk 4.31), truly nothing will be impossible for me. I will perform wonders, and above all the miracle of giving meaning not only to my living but also to my dying, not only to my enjoyments but also to my sufferings. I will perform the miracle of always being serene even in moments of storm, of rejoicing even in suffering, of “always rejoicing in the Lord” (Phil 4.4), of “taking pleasure even in my weaknesses” (2 Cor 12.9), of course that “when I am weak, that is when I am strong” (2 Cor 12:10), because the power of God triumphs in my infirmities and weaknesses.

Certainly a qualitative leap is needed: we need to abandon ourselves totally to him, we need total trust. But this is the Faith that changes life, because it lets God fill my voids, my littleness, my weakness, inhabiting my limits with his strength and making me capable of doing good, healing, salvation. for everyone I meet.

The second theme of this Gospel is the motivation of our commitment to the Kingdom. Many times that: “We are useless servants” (Lk 15.10) has been understood as an affirmation of human littleness, of our being microscopic in the eyes of God who is immense, of our nothingness in the history of salvation. But the translation: “We are useless servants” is not exact: “achrèioi” does not mean that the servants have no importance, but that they are “without use” (“a-chrèios”), that is, without gain, free. “It means that we do not do our work for gain or profit, but for free: simply because we belong to him and belong to him…. The apostolic ministry is by its nature free, because it reveals the source from which it flows: “You have received freely, give freely” (Mt 10.8). For Paul the highest reward is preaching the Gospel for free (1 Cor 9:18). The apostle is associated with his Lord’s ministry of grace and mercy to the world. The origin of his service is Faith, as the personal experience of the one who loved him and gave himself for him (Gal 2.20)… It is not a question of duty or interest: the love experienced makes him free to serve as his Lord” (S. Fausti).

Our service to the cause of the Kingdom must therefore be done absolutely gratuitously, not to expect advantages, nor an earthly reward in terms of greater graces or preservation from the illness or tribulations of life, nor in terms of the eschatological reward of a deserved Paradise. for our efforts. Our service must have the character of gratuitous love, which never demands anything, which never requires anything, but which always gives and spends itself.

And the master of servants will not be less in this generosity. In fact, in another passage from Luke an absurd, incredible, unexpected revelation is proclaimed: “Truly I tell you, the master will dress him, will have them sit at the table and will come and serve them!” (Lk 12,36-37). The master will begin to serve his servants. The master will become a servant, because he is a free gift, because he is Love.

Faith and Love: these are the two cornerstones of a beautiful, full, fulfilled, happy life, lived attached to God and as a happy service to all brothers.

Happy Mercy to all!

Anyone who would like to read a more complete exegesis of the text, or some insights, please ask me at


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