26th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C - 29/9/2013 - Gospel: Lk 16, 19-31
Known and unknown
Some people are gifted with names while others find that it is hard to remember others by names. Knowing people by name is a good starting point in human relationship. We would like to remember people by their names at the beginning of our conversation and that would save us from embarrassment but we also understand that our minds won't respond to our command when needed. Sometimes you recall the name of the person afterward. 

The parables of Jesus are rarely mention name of a person, except in a significant circumstance. There are two people in today's parable and only one name mentioned, the poor Lazarus and the other is known as the rich man.
The parable has three parts. The first part portrays the earthly contrast between the wealthy man and Lazarus. The second one describes the reversal of their conditions in the afterlife and the last part is the refusal of the rich man's request to returning home to tell his brothers about his fate.

Wealth is a sign of God's blessing, a sign of divine favour. God wants us to enjoy a life of peace and love. God can't contradict himself by endowing someone with gifts and talents and then expected them to develop the gifts to the full and then later condemn that person. The rich man was condemned not because of his wealth but because he didn't share his gifts. He was condemned for abusing the divine favour upon him. He ignored the opportunity to share his gifts, serve the poor right in front of his door step, the needy and marginalized. He received with an ungrateful heart. Sharing of the gifts of wealth and talents and time is a great blessing both for the givers and for the receivers. If the rich are generous in wealth for charity and have compassion and love for the needy the world would be a better place. The rich man calls Abraham his "Father."  Religious heritage doesn't guarantee salvation but living a life active compassion to others is a sign that we are truly children of God.

Poverty is the evidence of sin. It is not the sin of the poor but the sin of people who made them poor. The poor are victims and our loving God is on their side. People are poor which is caused by the sin of the ruling party, of those who are in the power position and that enables them to make rules in their favours, legally rob the poor for their benefit.  Lack of care makes the majority suffer and to live in poverty devaluing of human dignity is a sin. Legally things that are acceptable in a society doesn't mean that it is right to God but the sharing of wealth and befriending the poor and the needy and giving voice for the voiceless is the sign of God's spiritual blessings. These very gifts caused us to be right with God because we use the gifts to give glory God and with the receivers to praise God.