Devotion to Family

First Reading: 2 Sm 18:9-10, 14b, 24-25a, 30; 19:3
Psalm: Ps 86:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
Gospel: Mk 5:21-43

Today’s first reading focuses on David’s anguish over the death of
his son, Absalom.
His anguish has been called one of the most
heartrending passages in Scripture. “My son, my son Absalom! Would
I had died in your place! Absalom, my son, my son!”

The Scripture comments, “the day’s victory was turned to mourning
for all the troops, because they learned that the king was grieving
for his son.” Unfortunately, it was David who had created the
situation that led to his son’s death. Go back to yesterday’s
reflection; consider the evil that flowed from David’s excessive
love for his other son, Amnon. Had David given justice to Tamar and
Absalom, these evils never would have occurred. The final evil was
of course the death of Absalom.

David’s love for his family was very intense and worthy of
The difficulty is that devotion to family can be
misplaced; the family can be given absolute value and this can cause
many evils both for the family and even for those outside the family.
In any country in which family ties are very strong, as they are in
the Philippines, there is danger that defense of family members will
cross over the boundary into injustice. The family member accused
may be acquitted, but only at cost to the victims and to society in

How does my own faith compare to the suffering woman in today’s