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Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

"You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. (MT 5:13-16)

Brother Really (BR) really likes reading and asking questions about the Bible. After all, he thought to himself, Jesus said, "Ask, and he will give it to you, knock and the door will  open, and seek, you will find." So in his typical way, he asked the priest the other day, "What did Jesus mean when he said, 'you are the salt of the earth.?" BR quickly added, "Why not "the pepper of the earth." After all, I look more like pepper than salt.  And besides, "salt on your food drives your blood pressure up; salt breaks up sidewalks and driveways. On the other hand, pepper does not drive your blood pressure up, nor is pepper used on the sidewalks or driveways. But then again, pepper makes you sneeze." Still, BR would  rather be pepper of the earth as opposed to "salt of the earth." 

The priest laughed and said, "hold up," "Brother Really," slow down." "Hold up? I am not trying to hold you up!" BR responded, "I may look like "pepper," but I am not a thief, like Judas." "Oh, no," the priest interjected. I was trying to say that you must understand that Jesus was using a particular type of genre to bring home a critical lesson to the Jewish community. Using a "simile," a comparison, you being the salt of the earth, is saying that you and I, as disciples of Jesus, we give witness to the Lord on earth. As disciples, we share "salt," the love of God to everyone we meet on earth. BR, realizing that he misunderstood Jesus, began to reflect on how he can give "salt," the love of God to his neighbor, seasoned with God's mercy and grace. Really!

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