Monday, October 1, 2012

Thoughts on the Homily from September 30

Yesterday's mass at St. Pius X Catholic Church in Towson was a very nice mass musically--or at least I thought so. I didn't poll the remainder of the worship band, but the songs were all good songs for the bass (which I play) and my bass playing skills continue to improve--but remain way less than perfect.  In any case, the songs were good and seemed to fit with the meaning of the mass in a way that is as good as it gets most times.

During the mass, the readings included one from the Book of Numbers that mentions Eldad and Medad (which was also the subject of a classic homily by Fr. Hank), a reading from the letter of James, and a well known reading from the Gospel of Mark.

Of all the things that Fr. Sam talked about in the homily, there were some big points that I'd like to quickly comment on.

First, Fr. Sam reminded us that God still speaks--and it is important for us to listen and act like we do listen.

Second, Fr. Sam commented on the possibility of the corrupting influence of wealth--although stating that not everyone who is wealthy is corrupt.

Third, both the reading from Numbers and the gospel reading talked about calling into question who was speaking God's word.  Fr. Sam reminded us that we are all called on to speak God's word.  Some of us struggle with God's word.  I don't take any credit for having necessarily good insight into God's word, but I do struggle with, ask questions about, and share my thoughts on how God's word relates to me in this blog.  Is that what the Bible and my faith calls me to do?  Well, it's clear that would not necessarily have been anticipated when the Bible was written, but I don't think it is a bad interpretation.

Finally, the part of yesterday's Gospel that many would recognize was where Jesus called on people to cut off their hands or feet or pluck out their eyes if thy caused sin.  Fr. Sam pointed out that this was not meant literally but was meant to be a form of teaching that could be interpreted as "get rid of whatever keeps you from 'getting it'."  Where "getting it" is God's word.  I'm sure there are other interpretations of this particular reading, but this is a very cool one.  (And, I suppose, a very modern one.)  The main point of our faith is "to get it" in this interpretation (and then, of course, act on it) and whatever keeps us from getting it should be out of our lives.  Seems simple enough.  Once we get it, we can speak it.  Getting it reminds us to listen for God's voice in today's word.  And getting it can occur regardless of how much wealth we have or can provide us with an indication of how to use our wealth in a way consisten with God's words.     

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