“Amen, I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the other contributors to the treasury. For they have all contributed from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has contributed all she had, her whole livelihood.” (Gospel for Nov. 7, Mk 12:43-44)
“Give until it hurts” might seem like a tired old cliché, but it has merit nonetheless. It’s fairly easy to give from our excess — what we don’t really need — but real sacrifice begins when we go beyond that. The widow in the parable, in giving what to many people would be a bit of loose change, offered a more meaningful gift than the wealthy who donated far larger sums they would hardly miss. But there’s another layer of meaning here: Unlike the wealthy, the widow gave everything she had to God and put her trust completely in his divine providence. May we recognize that she made the wiser investment.
Challenge by Supreme Chaplain Archbishop William E. Lori:
This month, I challenge you to review your charitable giving and to pray about whether God is asking you to contribute something more. Second, I challenge you to participate in your council’s Food for Families or Coats for Kids Faith in Action program.
Questions for Reflection:
How does God wish you to balance providing for yourself and your family with serving others? Do you find you put your trust in material goods and wealth, rather than in God? What are some specific, concrete ways you might do better at sharing your blessings with the less fortunate?