Reflection & Dialogue: Christ and his Church the Pearl of Great Price
Today’s readings in good part speak for themselves and provide ample material for reflection on faith in the modern world, with its general lack of interest in religion or religious matters, an attitude affecting many Catholics. The pearl of great value and the hidden treasure in the parable are symbols for the kingdom of God. And the kingdom of God is Christ and his mission, and their continuation in the Christian faith and the Church. The theme runs through all three readings. Solomon prayed for an understanding heart, a heart to recognize the truth and God’s will for him. The second reading speaks of the dignity of the Christian faith, and God’s activity in bringing the first stages to perfection, all intent in having believers become true images of Jesus, God’s own Son. The gospel parables are a call to believers to embrace their Christian calling with joy, and for those still seeking the truth to continue their quest and find the hidden treasure that of belief in Christ.
In earlier times this joy and pride in our Christian belief was taken as normal. God’s plan in Christ and the Church, leading to eternal life, was presented and accepted as the one thing necessary. The gospel parables call on us to renew our eagerness for the kingdom, and all it stands for.