-The homily from April 3 is in the library->
-the scriptures for Lent V are at USCCB.org->
-I am preaching at the 8:00am and 9:30am Masses on Sunday 4/10
In the years that I served as an emcee for the bishop I was always training young servers for big liturgies. Somewhere in that instruction I would say "today we are going to use the first definition of the word 'now'. When I say "now" to you about some task I mean now, immediately, right away, this moment.".
The instruction generally would make them smile but it alerted them to the mode of operating for the task at hand. Jesus' conversation with Martha outside the tomb of her very dead brother is missing the word "now" but the definition of "now" is implied and essential to the mystery of who Jesus is and what faith is all about.
Martha says " Yes, Lord, I know he will rise...in the resurrection on the last day." Jesus then gives her the "now" instructions..."I AM the resurrection". NOW!
There's obviously at least two ways to believe in the resurrection: for then or NOW. I am thinking that this is the heart of St. Paul's instruction to the Romans...living in the flesh or in the Spirit. There must be disciples of Jesus living in the flesh (delayed resurrection) and those living in the Spirit (NOW).
In theology class we refer to some of this as "already but not yet" meaning that, while something is real for us, it is not yet complete. I think I and too many disciples of Jesus are straddling the time divide: thinking that we are living His life already with and in the Spirit, but really we are walking dead men in the "not yet" attitudes of the flesh.
What is a not yet attitude of the flesh? Yep, fear, sadness, and anger(see "Martha"). How many disciples spend how much energy and religious capital justifying sadness, fear, and anger. When we do that, we are if you will, dead in the water (baptismal water, that is). We really don't believe in the Jesus who is resurrection and life NOW. Or do we?
Get into the ring! How this works...
This is easy! Each week on Thursday I post my homily idea...my main focus for preaching this coming Sunday. What I am hoping for is a reaction from people in the pews. Does my "focus" connect with your daily life, faith, and experience? Or not? Either affirm the direction I am going in (by giving me an example from your life) or challenge me, ask for clarification! Questions are the best! Reaction rather than reflection is what I'm looking for here. Don't be afraid, get in the ring. Ole!