-Last Sunday's homily is available by email
-This Sunday's Scriptures can be found at www.usccb.org
-check out this week's LinC Letter on the back of the parish bulletin or at www.saint-albert.org/lincletter
I will be celebrating mass at 4pm on Sat and at 111amm 6pm on Sunday
NOT what I wanted to hear!
.Difference" is certainly the measurement or the metric that is central to our American and maybe human consciousness at this moment in history. The scripture readings for this Sunday's mass point out to us that "difference" might be just a nice name for "hatred". In fact "difference" may be a modern wod for "original sin". You might recall that immediately after committing the "original sin" Adam and Eve reportedly covered themselves because they noticed that they were naked. Difference. Just prior to that covering of the difference Adam had exclaimed when looking at his newly created bride, "this is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh". He did not recognize the difference between them because it was not difference it was "complement".
That's an interesting distinction isn't it? Between an attitude of "difference" or the appreciation of "complementarity". One is an experience of isolation and separation and the other is that of unity and communion. One is of God the other of the devil.
The interaction between Jesus and the cannanite woman is understood by most scholars to be a rhetorical lesson for the disciples of Jesus( with the potential of being painful for the poor woman). What that means to me is that Jesus is using irony or sarcasm in his response to the Canaanite woman to point out the error or the sin in the politico-religious thinking his disciples. That is to say that the disciples were manifesting a religious opinion about the Messiah, whom they presumed Jesus to be. Jesus, rather sarcastically, articulates this mistaken understanding of the disciples that "the Messiah would come to save only Israel, God's chosen people". Not foreigners! Not true!
Jesus, the Messiah, the son of God, came to live among God's people not to elevate one society, nation, race, or people above others. Jesus, the Messiah, came to be the universal access point of the human family's reconnection/reconciliation with the God who made them and loves them.
So the message of this weeks Gospel has nothing to do with Jesus's rather disturbing and disrespectful comments to a foreigner, it really has nothing to do about the pagan Canaanite woman's sick daughter, nor does it have anything to do with the disciples disrespect for the Canaanite woman. I believe the message of this week's gospel is that there is not a dime's worth a difference between a cannanite, Israelite, Muslim, Christian, black, brown, white child of God. By faith, they have universal access to God. All human beings are creatures of a loving father and they cling to God's hand through every storm, they persevere by faith.
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!