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Homilies :: Latin Rite
TWENTIETH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME Download This Homily

August 18, 2019

TWENTIETH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

Jer 38: 4-6,

Heb 12:1-4

Luke 12:49-53

 

Gospel Reading

 

Jesus said to his disciples: 'I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were blazing already!

There is a baptism I must still receive, and what constraint I am under until it is completed! 'Do you suppose that I am here to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. For from now on, a household of five will be divided: three against two and two against three; father opposed to son, son to father, mother to daughter, daughter to mother, mother-in-law to daughter-in-law, daughter-in-law to mother-in-law.'

 

Reflection

The Fire He Brings

 

The days after the feast of Pentecost refer to the preaching of the Gospel and proclaiming the Kingdom of God by the disciples of Jesus to the ends of the earth. Inspired by divine musings, the disciples went on their mission and proclaimed the advent of the Kingdom of God, a mission bound to borders of the earth. Preaching of Gospel can naturally and essentially evoke two kinds of responses, one affirmative or receptive and the other negative. Consequently a division for and against the Kingdom of God arises. In a world where evil has dominance this division or polarity is not unexpected. This polarity will certainly co-exist side by side until the last and the least member of the world gets the entry pass into Kingdom of God. And the exigency of the proclaiming the message of Gospel is always there and will be there until the last times.

In the Gospel Jesus speaks of bringing fire on earth. The fire as the symbol of the Holy Spirit is to be kindled in every heart and to the end of the earth. The ‘borders’ does not necessarily mean ‘geographical’. This means the heart of the last person on earth. The fire, the fire of love, should reach even to the corners of each man’s heart kindling the fire of love in every heart. So the mission is heavy and it is going to be an ever-stretching path of preaching before the last missionary can sit and relax. So the task is stupendous with its limits fully stretched. The fire, as it signifies the Holy Spirit, also refers to the unifying love abiding in our hearts. Whoever receives this fire, steps aside and joins the pilgrimage to eternal good, the Trinitarian communion against the Evil Spirit, which is always divisive and is always against unifying love. What Spirit brings is the communion, the unifying love, abiding within us. As a faithful my task is to find my space with those who stand for unifying love. There is always this struggle within us to join spirit of unity and the spirit of disunity. When I am affirmative to the good, I am part of the pilgrimage to the Trinitarian unity. Where am I now? What does dominate myself within? What is my Conscience Quotient? When there is consistency, perseverance and unity within my conscience level in promoting good I am travelling with those on the right side, those with correct perspectives of the Kingdom of God. Do I become a unifying element in my family, in my work place, in my parish or religious community? Do I win back those who are divisive in a community, the agents of the evil spirit? Am I hell-bent on gaining them? Then I am a missionary. You have kindled fire, the fire of love, on hearts. When you are on the side of unity, you are part of minority. Being part of minority is making oneself sometimes helpless and hapless, often self-pitying and facing the struggles to stand alone.

As we read in the writings of Jeremiah there will always be a ray of hope which will reinforce and energize our intent to be part of the good. God intervenes at an appropriate time to take our side and extends his saving grace as we see in the OT reading. The author of the Hebrews says, looking to Jesus the pioneer and the perfecter of our living faith let us run with perseverance the race set before us. He endured hostility against himself from those on the side of the evil. Don’t lose heart and become weary, the final victory is for those who stand on the right side of the truth.

 

Fr Antony Kochalumkal CMI

Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India to assist the clergy to preach the World of God and also as a handy spiritual resource for the people of God to reflect on the daily spiritual passages at their convenience. You can download this on your Android phone from Google play and you can see the Gospel reflections of the whole year. The size of this app is just 2.5 MB. We welcome your suggestions and contributions to server you better.

May God Bless you

Fr. James M L CMI

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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.


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