OMELIE / Omelie EN

26/06/2016 – 13th. Sunday in Ordinary Season C

26/06/2016 – 13th. Sunday in Ordinary Season Year C

1Reading 1Kgs 19,16.19-21 Psalm 15 2Reading Gal 5,1.13-18 Gospel Lk 9,51-62

Peter's Pence

“Christ liberated us for freedom”! This is a surprising affirmation which multiplies our questions. From what Christ has liberated us? For which motive and in view of what he has liberated us? What kind of liberty did he give us and what do we need to conserve?

Am I able to give an answer to these questions? Saint Paul is talking here in regards to the various ritual rules that the Jews used to have, that he himself had to observe during his earthly life until he met Jesus on the road to Damascus. These were rules, some of them in regards to nutrition, others hygiene and behavior, some others regards the   religious rites; their exact observance rendered those wo observed them slaves: many did not know why they had to observe them e no one was able to observe them all. One had to pay attention not to deviate from these either voluntarily nor involuntarily, and if this happened, one had to purify himself every day, waiting for other detailed rules. Despite this, no one arrived to enjoy the serenity of the joy of being felt loved by God. With a great sigh of relief, the apostle Paul was able to affirm: “Christ has freed us”. Now it is he the center of our attention and it is he the motive of our living, it is he who purifies us, not from the error in observing the rules but from our negligences of love, that is from our sins. In a few words, it is he the rule of life. We could say this with sureness because it is he the word of God, it is he the one sent by the Father as the way through which we meet him. He invites us and he gives us that strength necessary to love, that strength necessary to be accepted by the Father and realize his will. Love overcomes all the rules. Loving Jesus and following him in his own footsteps frees us from servitude of riles. Those are not more necessary because He is there, our God. The old rules serve only to prepare to his coming, and for us to be ready to accept him.

“Stand fast therefore in the liberty where with Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” Saint Paul recommends to the Christians of Galatia, e to us today, not abandoning our referral to Christ. The temptation exists; exists the temptation to fix ourselves in some form of rites and in some prayers that we need to recite in a certain way or in a certain language and not in others, as if God has stopped looking at our heart and he he is more interested like us, in appearances. Jesus is always freedom, not liberty as a pretext to do that which pleases us, but freedom to be similar to the father. Being with Jesus make us wish and capable to love, because He is merciful love as the Father. Being with Jesus make us rich in the Holy Spirit, the Spirit which bring is always to love God in the first place, and to love the brothers as consequence and demonstration of the true love to the God of love and peace.

Having Jesus as the only referral: it is the significance of “following Jesus”. The gospel passage has shown to us four ways, all imperfect, to follow him. The first, which is erroneous, is that of the disciples of James and Jon: they followed Jesus, but having in their hearts a judgment and a condemnation for others. They even want to invoke the fire from heaven, to punish those who are not ready to accept the Lord. No, they follow Jesus just from the outside: their heart is far away His. There are those then, who want to follow Him, ma they expect a sort of compensation, a certain material good. They hope to obtain a work, or a married life, a solution for their house mortgage. This is following Jesus from the exterior way: such a person does not help the building of the Church. Then there are those who follow but after their parents had died. But if the love for the parents is bigger than that of Jesus he is no good to neither his parents because he does not give them the joy to see and enjoy the Kingdom of God. Finally there is that who procrastinates his decision for the future, for when he receives his pension, or when he receives the consent from his parents or from his family. He wants to belong to Jesus but without disappointing the world. It is no wonder thus that Jesus does not want to be surrounded by these people.

An example for everyone even for the disciples is that of Elisha, who, as soon as he knew that he was called to share his mission, said his goodbyes to his family, abandoned his work and all that he owned and went with joy to serve his prophet. He showed to everyone the joy by offering a banquet of feast. By this he foretold that following Jesus is the joy of life, and that there is nothing more beautiful and nothing more life-giving. 

“I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiced: my flesh also shall rest in hope.”