The Gospel of Matthew, chapter 25, contains a well-known and powerful passage about the final judgment. At that time, the Son of Man will separate everyone into two groups, “as a shepherd separates sheep from goats.” He will say to the sheep, “Come you have my Father’s blessings! Inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me drink. I was a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me.” When the sheep ask when they did such things, the king answers, “I assure you, as often as you did it for one of my least brothers or sisters, you did it for me.”
Today our parish begins our week of providing shelter for the temporarily homeless through SOS, South Oakland Shelter. I am happy that we can be part of this effort. I am so very grateful for our organizers, Jon Fox, Debbie Eagenwest, and Clyde Bostick. I am also grateful for the small army of volunteers who make this possible, by donating time, talent, and treasure. Your generosity is palpable, tangible, and visible. I feel like I am seeing this passage of the Gospel take on flesh. You are giving up sleep, providing food, paper goods, driving, cooking, and supervising. Thank you, one and all, for your goodness and generosity and helping me experience the Word becoming flesh in this way. As a parish, we are all privileged to welcome Jesus in our midst this week through this experience.