Memorial of Saint Josaphat, Bishop and Martyr
3 John 5-8
Beloved, you do faithfully whatever you do for the friends, even though they are strangers to you; they have testified to your love before the church. You will do well to send them on in a manner worthy of God; for they began their journey for the sake of Christ, accepting no support from non-believers. Therefore we ought to support such people, so that we may become co-workers with the truth.
Happy are those who fear the Lord, who greatly delight in his commandments. Their descendants will be mighty in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed. Wealth and riches are in their houses, and their righteousness endures forever. They rise in the darkness as a light for the upright; they are gracious, merciful, and righteous. It is well with those who deal generously and lend, who conduct their affairs with justice. For the righteous will never be moved; they will be remembered forever.
Then Jesus told them a parable about their need to pray always and not to lose heart. He said, “In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor had respect for people. In that city there was a widow who kept coming to him and saying, ‘Grant me justice against my opponent.’ For a while he refused; but later he said to himself, ‘Though I have no fear of God and no respect for anyone, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will grant her justice, so that she may not wear me out by continually coming.’” And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long in helping them? I tell you, he will quickly grant justice to them. And yet, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?”
When the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth? Jesus leaves us with this question today. For many, in the days following the election, there is a lot of strife and mourning, especially in the states that continue to legalize abortion. The faithful have been praying for an end to this horrific and violent act for several decades. It is easy to feel overwhelmed with emotion. It is easy to lose heart. But we must return to the question Jesus asks us. When he comes, will he find faith among us?
Jesus also gives us a beautiful parable for our perseverance. The unjust judge is not properly a person in the story, but a representation of justice itself. Jesus is saying that when justice itself is unjust, there is still a recourse. Persistence and constant petition can make even unjust justice resort to doing right. Even against the will of the unjust judge, he renders a decision in the widow's favor. If this is how unjust justice behave, how much more so will God act, who is Justice himself? If unjust justice will bend under the nagging of the persistent, how much more will God give justice when we ask? We must never lose heart. We must constantly keep up the fight by petitioning heaven to grant us justice and mercy and grace on earth. As St. John exhorts the faithful to aid God's servants on their way, so we must continually join the Church and all servants of God in prayer and in all manner of support to eradicate this evil and increase the kingdom of God.
Jesus tells us today to pray always and never lose heart. He is the ultimate judge and the Prince of Peace. He is the only one who can save us from the great evils that plague us today and always. We must always persevere and always pray and trust in God's love and compassion. He will answer our faithful petition. Let us stay strong that he may find faith on earth.