Marcellino D'Ambrosio, Crossroads Initiative

catechetical resourses for the Catholic ChurchMarcellino D'Ambrosio, Crossroads Initiative RCIA in

the Catholic ChurchMarcellino D'Ambrosio, Crossroads Initiative adult

education in the Catholic ChurchMarcellino D'Ambrosio, Crossroads Initiative

Exploring the Catholic ChurchMarcellino D'Ambrosio, Crossroads Initiative Early

Church Fathers
Crossroads Initiatitve, a ministry of Dr. Marcellino


Dives, the Rich Man and Lazarus, the Beggar

Holy Land Banner Small 

Dr. Marcellino D'AmbrosioDives the Rich Man and Lazarus the Beggar:

Protecting Our Addictions

by: Dr. Marcellino D'Ambrosio



The gospel of Luke, chapter 16, tells the story of the Rich man and the Beggar, Dives and Lazarus.  This parable shows how some choices we make lead to addictions that can determine even our eternal destiny.  Gluttony, one of the 7 Deadly Sins, is a poison that has an antidote -- the Cardinal Virtue called Temperance or Moderation.


Temperance.  For older American, that word conjures up images of Carrie Nation shattering bottles of gin to usher in Prohibition.


Carrie Nation, bar-destroying hatchet, prohibition, Cardinal Virtues

But the word temperance does not mean abstinence from alcohol or total abstinence from anything, for that matter.  It means that the desire for pleasures of various sorts is brought into balance with other legitimate needs and obligations.  Also called moderation, this virtue is the power whereby pleasure is allowed to do its job of refreshing and rewarding us for life-sustaining activities (like resting, working, eating, procreating) but keeps the pursuit of pleasure from becoming an addiction that interferes with our duty and our health.  It is one of the Cardinal Virtues, one of the key qualities, identified by both ancient Greek philosophers and God’s inspired word, that anyone must possess and perfect who wishes to live a successful life.


In the absence of Temperance, the desire for pleasure drives us to overindulge with predictable results: indigestion and a hangover.  Eating and drinking too much is Gluttony, one of the Seven Deadly Sins.  But immoderate indulgence of any appetite, not just food and drink, is a type of Gluttony as well: too much TV, exercise, shopping, web-surfing, talking on the phone, etc.


Fair share, strawberries, Gluttony, Seven Deadly sins

The saddest thing about gluttony is that it causes us to be self-absorbed.   Pursuit of pleasure leads to the neglect not only of our true health and well-being, but of the needs of those around us.  Our compulsion for more pleasure finally leads to injustice: we’ll take more than our fair share of the strawberries leaving our siblings with none.


This is the problem with the wealthy Israelites that Amos reproves in this Sunday’s first reading.  Their fault is not their wealth.  Nor is it that from time to time they enjoy their wealth.  The problem is that all they do with their wealth is indulge themselves, oblivious to the fact that the Kingdom of Israel is collapsing all around them.


The same is true for the rich man of this Sunday’s Gospel (Luke 16).  Dives (Latin for Rich man) does not just feast on Sabbaths and holidays.  He feasts every day.  Not only does he fail to invite Lazarus to feast with him, but he fails even to share his leftovers with this sick beggar who sits right in front of the door to his house.

Lazarus and the Rich Man, The Sin of Omission, Seven Deadly Sins, Temperance, Addiction


Did he mock the beggar, set his dogs upon him, or maliciously hurt him in any way?  No, he did not commit any of these sins.  His sin was rather a sin of omission: he failed to do what he could to relieve the suffering of someone right under his nose.  He had allowed his self-indulgence to blind him to the needs of others and muffle the voice of his conscience.


There were eternal consequences to the rich man’s choice.  He who hardened his heart, refusing mercy, found himself exiled from Mercy for all eternity.  The conversation at the end of the story between this damned soul and Father Abraham is pitiful.  He thought that maybe the hardness of heart, the deafness of ear could be punctured by God shouting louder, in the form of a greater miracle than Moses and the prophets had worked.  “If only someone would come back from the dead and warn my brothers . . .”   His brothers’ overwhelming commitment to their own comfort would cause them to shut out the voice of the Risen Lord, to turn off the hearing aid.  Some will do anything to protect their lifestyle, their chosen form of addiction.


Addiction, Temperance, Seven Deadly Sins,

Why despite all logic, all scientific evidence, all mercy, is abortion-on-demand the law of our land?  Because it is necessary to safeguard the lifestyle of a very large and powerful portion of our nation’s population.


That’s the price our country is willing to pay to protect one of its addictions.  The question is, what addiction are you are protecting?


Para Espanol, para "click" aqui!


This first appeared in Our Sunday Visitor as a reflection on the scripture readings for the 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C (Amos 6:1-4, 1 Tim 6:11-16; Lk 16:19-31).  It is reproduced here by permission of the author.


Follow Us -

Join us on FacebookJoin us on Facebook



Join us on TwitterJoin us on Twitter




Download and Print The Prodigal Son

Click here to download, print and share Fatal Attractions!


For more Catholic resources to feed your faith, visit the Crossroads Initiative Homepage.


Win a Free CD - Catholic Online Resources


To sign up for our free weekly e-mail with Dr. D'Ambrosio's commentary on the Sunday readings, liturgical feasts, updates on where Dr. D will be speaking, a chance to WIN a FREE CD and MORE, CLICK HERE!



The Seven Deadly Sins -

The Seven Deadly SinsThis dynamic 3 talk set is a BEST SELLER! Have you ever wondered what exactly the Seven Deadly Sins are? Dr. D'Ambrosio will shed new light on them and he offers practical life-changing suggestions for keeping the Deadly Sins at bay!

Seven Deadly Sins 3 CDs - $24.00



 The Virtues: Seven Habits of Champions- DVD The Virtues: Seven Habits of Champions- DVD
What is the antidote to the Seven Dealy Sins? The Seven Habits of Champions of course! Dr. Marcellino D'Ambrosio offers a spirited 8-part meditation on the four moral virtues - fortitude, prudence, justice and temperance - as well as the three theological virtues of faith, hope and charity. This program lays out how God's inspiration for Christian living is accessible to everyone and demonstrated for us through the lives of the saints.



Feast of Faith -

The Transforming Power of the Eucharist


"The Feast of Faith," is an enlightening, four-part adult faith formation series (on 2 CDs, or 2 DVDs) guaranteed to unlock the life-changing power of the Eucharist in your life. Be sure to order the Feast of Faith Workbook, you may view it online, to get the most out of this amazing Eucharist Series!


Feast of Faith DVD - $49.95

Feast of Faith – CD - $19.95

Feast of Faith Workbook - $6.95 



Exploring the Catholic Church: An Introduction to Catholic Teaching & Practice
 Exploring the Catholic Church Introduction to Catholic Doctrine and Practice, a Roman Catholic Book Exploring the Catholic Church: An Introduction to Catholic Teaching and Practice by Dr. Marcellino D'Ambrosio is an accessible, affordable Roman Catholic Book--perfect gift for anyone!! -- the inactive Catholic, the Sunday Catholic wanting to know more, Protestants who want to know why Catholics do what they do. In fact there are TWO chapters devoted to the meaning of the Eucharist and how to get more out of it!  An enjoyable approach to faith formation and religious education.



BioLean® of the BioLean® Weight Management System - free-shipping

 BioLean of the Bio-Lean weight management & fat-loss system Ephedra-free BioLean®, of the BioLean® Weight Management System, is an excellent natural choice to help jump-start your healthy lifestyle.  Designed to help curb your cravings, promote healthy energy levels, and satisfy your appetite, BioLean® is powered by Advantra Z®, the only patented citrus aurantium extract for weight loss on the market today.  The great thing about BioLean® is that is can help reduce body fat even while promoting the development of lean muscle mass --the only path to long-term, healthy weight loss. 



Confirmation - The Sacrament of Champions 

 Sacrament of Confirmation sacrament of Champions, confirmation gift for RCIA & Catholic teens Why do we need the sacrament of confirmation? What is the purpose and meaning of this sacramental anointing? These questions and more are answered by this dynamic talk appropriate for both teens and adults.

Home | Site Map | Links | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Free Newsletter | Win a CD | Calender | Donate Now!
A ministry of Crossroads Productions, Inc. + PO Box 271227 + Flower Mound, TX 75027 + 1.800.803.0118 + a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.