Hi everyone, here’s my homily for June 14, 2015 - 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time. The readings for today can be found at http://usccb.org/bible/readings/061415.cfm. Thanks as always for reading, sharing this blog on facebook, twitter and reddit - and for your comments and feedback. Have a great week - God Bless, Fr Jim
It started out as a small gesture that became huge...
In his overwhelming grief, Kazz spontaneously shared that he had a week to go until he graduated from High School - now with his parents gone, he didn’t know what to do. The officer said to him "You’re going to walk! Your Mom and Dad will have a front-row seat from heaven, and I’ll stand in their place. I’ve got your back."
When Kazzie’s day to walk the stage at his graduation came, Lt. Ellison was there to cheer him on. "I walked up on the stage he looked at me and I looked at him and we both cried ..." Lt. Ellison recounted, reflecting on the emotional moment that soon went viral. He wrote about the outpouring of support the story generated on his facebook page: "I am HUMBLED for the positive comments I’ve received about being there for Kazzie. I just want everybody to remember that through this tragedy, this was ALL about Kazzie and his day to shine. I just did what I would want someone to do if I had left my girls early."
For his part, Kazz shared his gratitude for this small, but meaningful gesture: "Seeing Officer Ellison there to congratulate me meant the world to me. It was so nice to see that he actually showed a genuine care for me and my family’s situation instead of us just being another ‘case.’ "
Which is why on this Sunday - now that Lent, Holy Week, Easter, Pentecost, Trinity Sunday and Corpus Christi have ended and the Church returns to the season called - (very anticlimactically) "Ordinary Time" this parable is a perfect one for us to reflect on. Because what is at the heart of what Jesus is saying to us? We so often imagine our call to be his disciples in extremes - we beat ourselves up when we fail, when we sin and feel like we’ve made a complete mess of things...and we think that holiness, being his faithful disciple is only evident in doing massively important things - being a missionary, being like Mother Teresa – and remains something few of us can achieve.
But what Jesus challenges us with in this parable is to embrace the faith of the planter - whether of seeds or ideas, acts as we go about life in the ordinary - day to day routine of things. Because what we find is that there are countless opportunities to plant whatever small seed we can and nurturing that seed into something good, something life giving, something that will glorify God - not ever knowing how that might transform someone else’s life .
In embracing Christ’s call to hold the faith of the Gospel farmer and the hope of the mustard seed: you and I engage in the ordinary but essential task of being willing to plant seeds of kindness, of joy wherever and whenever we can in the certain knowledge that these small gestures will, in some way, result in the abundant harvest of God’s life and love.