A wise Jesuit once taught me that what Jesus warns against is the danger of judging not actions but the human heart.
With that in mind we take up one last time a part of the great Sermon on the Plain from which we have read for the past four weeks. What we have today is a series of three unrelated separate sayings of Jesus gathered into one place. Shorter than Matthew’s Sermon on the Mount, this is a short list of absolutely essential components of authentic Christianity. … more »
As I am out of the country this Sunday, the homily below will not be delivered in person
It is provided here simply for reflection. No audio will be available.
1 Samuel 26, 2, 7-9, 12-13, 22-23 + Psalm 103 + 1 Corinthians 15, 45-49 + Luke 6, 27-38
It is very important to know and understand the first reading today and the story there describing the conflict between David and Saul. It sets the scene for what Jesus has to say to us in the Gospel today. They both wanted to kill the other, and David has every opportunity to do so, but he does not. He explains this by insisting that the “Lord’s anointed” (King Saul) should not be harmed. … more »
There is something very important to notice in Luke’s Beatitudes that differs from Matthew, and I suspect that hardly anyone would notice if no attention was given to the exact words. We have so easily blended together the two that we hardly notice that Luke says, “Blessed are you who are poor, or hungry, or weeping, or hated”. Matthew says: “Blessed are the poor in spirit.” In Luke there is no nuance or need to reflect on what it means. … more »
The mission is never dependent on the worthiness of the minister. That is the message we hear three times today, from Isaiah, from Paul, and from a fisherman called Peter. He and his companions have been hard at it all night long. Jesus walks up and suggests that he knows something these professionals do not know. Instead of scoffing at the idea, they try something new. The result is surprising. It is not their first encounter with Jesus. Just a few verses earlier, Jesus has been at the home of Peter and cured his mother-in-law. … more »