Homily January 26, 2014 Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Posted in christian, Christianity, ecclesiology, inspirational, religion by Fr Joe R on January 21, 2014

peter andrewIn today’s gospel, we find that John the Baptist has been arrested and Jesus goes back to Galilee to begin his ministry. He leaves Nazareth and heads to Capernaum in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali, a part of the former Northern Kingdom where there were still many gentiles living and was sometimes referred to as a place of darkness. As with the wise men, Matthew is once again pointing out Jesus came for the gentiles presenting a light where darkness had been before. Jesus started preaching and healing and we hear him start assembling his apostles. Starting in the North was seen as being in the poorer and less perfect part of Israel. Galilee was seen as dark and less perfect a place for the Jews to dwell. As so often happens, God and his son do it their way, not as the inhabitants and believers of Israel would have it. Isaiah synogoguehad prophesied that from the gloom a light will shine. So we see Jesus goes forward and preaches repentance and light in the gloom, healing and calling all back to God.
That call continues today, calling all to turn to God and put aside all that is in the way of that. Most commonly what stands directly in our way is our own designs and desires and ourselves. Certainly, not all are called to live in a religious community or be a formal minister, but certainly we are called to the beliefs and living out the gospel according to the life we lead. Every person is different, but the love of God is present to all and we are each called to that love in the very particular way we are able to love. Each of us has been gifted in a certain way and using our own particular gifts is how we respond to Christ’s call. Our lives and all the moments we have to share are opportunities to give back the love we have received. Like Christ our concern should be to bring a little light into the darkness of the world. In today’s world it is a challenging task, for much darkness is present if we only look around and see the obscenity of homelessness and poverty side-by-side with wealth and the glamor of nearby surroundings. This does not mean that Christ’s message is a failure, but simply it means we are falling short of carrying it out. As with any thing in life it is easy to get satisfied and comfortable and say I have done all I can. Like the man who built the extra store houses, we can be the fool by looking to far ahead when as God said this very night you will die.
Thus we see that a bit of uncertainty is a part of living our faith. In loving we must remember that always the requirement is for giving more. The more we give, the more there is to give. When have we given enough? I’m afraid only you and God can make that judgment. You are the only two who can know for sure. But what more points out followers of Christ than the care and giving of that very love we have received. That is why we are called to forgive because we are quick to forgive ourselves, and so we should just as quickly forgive others. What love can there be if there is any ill will present? So today we are again called to repent and to once again answer Christ’s call.


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