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Jesus said to the twelve and those around him, ‘Is a lamp brought in to be put under the bushel basket, or under the bed, and not on the lampstand? For there is nothing hidden, except to be disclosed; nor is anything secret, except to come to light. Let anyone with ears to hear listen!’ And he said to them, ‘Pay attention to what you hear; the measure you give will be the measure you get, and still more will be given you. For to those who have, more will be given; and from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away.’
For there is nothing hidden, except to be disclosed; nor is anything secret, except to come to light.
The recorded qualities of Thomas Aquinas cast him as a role model for us all. He was a priest, philosopher and teacher of the faith who has become renowned for his capacity to bring great theological wisdom to issues that many of us simply take for granted. Thomas did not only study and ponder the great spiritual mysteries of Christendom, he also passed on his learning to others with great gentleness of spirit. There is a prayer attributed to Thomas which reveals the motives and desires of this forward looking theologian:
Most loving Lord, grant me a steadfast heart
which no unworthy desire may drag downwards;
an unconquered heart which no hardship may wear out;
an upright heart which no worthless purpose may ensnare.
Impart to me also, O God,
the understanding to know you,
the diligence to seek you,
a way of life to please you,
and a faithfulness that may embrace you,
through Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen.
Today’s reading calls us to emulate Thomas Aquinas in our study of the mysteries of the Christian faith and then, also in the way of Thomas Aquinas, to share our knowledge and our love of God with others.
Not everyone is called to be an academic theologian, but we are all called to bring the light of Christ into the lives of others. Through faith we are all offered some measure of knowledge. That knowledge gives us some insight into the love and mercy of God. Each of us has a different measure of that knowledge. For some there is a greater understanding of the theoretical principles that uphold the Christian faith; for some there is a greater pastoral awareness and sensitivity; for some there is a simple and profound joy at knowing the risen Christ in their lives. Wherever God meets us on our faith journeys is personal to us, and we should not belittle that point of meeting by comparing ourselves with others.
We are all called to be like Thomas Aquinas. We are all called to be teachers of the faith in whatever way we can, whether it be academic or practical. Let us all pray that, through our words and actions, nothing about Jesus Christ may be hidden and that nothing about God’s love for the whole of humanity may be kept a secret.