Commentary on the Gospel of

Paulson Veliyannoor, CMF - Claretian Publications Philippines

Why F(e)ast?

Pope Benedict XVI opens his encyclical Deus Caritas Est with this affirmation: “Being Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction” (# 1). Consequently, what one does or does not do depends on the relationship that unfolds within this encounter. The disciples of John are a bit clueless as to why they ‘have to’ fast and the disciples of Jesus do not, because they do not recognize that the act of fasting is not an end in itself, but has meaning only in relation to Christ, the bridegroom of human soul. In his presence, the soul feasts; in his absence, it mourns. When such relationality defines our interpersonal relations, God will hear us and say, “I am here.”


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