The newly ordained OFM priest Fr. Crispus reminded the congregation that having a relationship with Christ is a prerequisite to serving the poor. We cannot serve the poor if we do not know Christ.
He explained that we might misunderstand what Qoheleth is saying in the 1st Reading(Ecc 1:2-11).
vanity of vanities! All is vanity.
What does man gain by all the toil
at which he toils under the sun?
Everything seems futile because, in the end, we all die. Death is inevitable. But in Psalms 90: 36, we are reminded to surrender to God and find gladness in Him. We see Herod asking the right question in the Gospel (Lk 9:7-9) “I beheaded John. Who, then, is this I hear such things about?” but he does not seek to find the answer.
We need to know who Jesus is. We need to seek to have a deeper relationship with Him. If we are to serve as Jesus did, we need to know him at a deeper level and keep getting closer to him. We will never be able to serve unless we have a personal relationship with Christ.