It’s SuperBowl Sunday in America; the professional football championship of the world will take place this evening. In a time when the United States, most of its middle-class, is handcuffed with the tight grip of a recession, today money is no object. Players and coaches earning millions of dollars to participate. Large companies spending mega-bucks to run ads during the timeouts. Thousands of people spending money on tickets, food, lodging, parties on the home front all to enjoy the culmination of the NFL football season.
Saturday night I heard a story in church that was shared by our priest, Father Bob Kabat, that puts into perspective the millions of dollars exchanged as a result of the SuperBowl. I hope I get this right….
Fiorello La Guardia was mayor of New York City in the 1930’s and 1940’s in New York. The airport in New York City is named after him. For one evening, Mayor La Guardia dismissed the judge from a particular night court. A few minutes later, a tattered old woman was brought before him. She was being charged for stealing a loaf of bread. She told the Mayor that her daughter’s husband had left, her daughter was sick, and her grandchildren were starving. The shopkeeper would not drop the charges and the Mayor believed, by the letter of the law, that she did have to be punished. The punishment was $10.oo. The Mayor took $10.00 out of his wallet and paid the fine for the old, tattered woman. He then fined EVERYONE in attendance to pay .50 each for living in a town where a grandmother has to steal bread in order for her grandchildren to eat. He passed his hat to the bailiff and the bailiff passed the hat and collected a total of $47.5o.
We were made in the image of God to do good things and to love all people. Mayor La Guardia is a great example of how we need to treat all people. How can WE serve the Lord? How can WE love all people?