FR. BEN’S HOMILY FOR WEDNESDAY OF THE 19TH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME CYCLE I
THEME: PAIN/ CONFLICT RESOLUTION!
BY: Ben Agbo (Rev Fr)
HOMILY: * Deut 34 : 1 – 12, Matt 18 : 15 – 20.
Pain, sorrow and conflict have uncanny ways of disrupting the psycho – spiritual equilibrium of a Christian community. These negative emotions produce negative supernatural energies that sometimes disrupt our mental health, physical and spiritual wellbeing. We must therefore learn how to manage the bereaved, the broken hearted, the quarreling, the over ambitious and the psychologically depressed amongst us and help them bounce back to normalcy. Even God himself had to manage the Israelites well in their 30 days sorrow and mourning for Moses, their leader, in today’s 1st reading by not allowing them see where he was buried. Perhaps, he knows that if they had seen his graveside, they may not have been able to let go and may never have reached the promised land. We must learn to let go of our past grievances and sorrows.
The gospel gives us 3 processes of conflict resolution;
1. Private Stage; If your brother offends you, begin by attempting a fraternal dialogue between two of you aside.
2. Semi – Private; If you can’t dialogue with him/ her successfully, then you have to invite one or two persons that can help facilitate this dialogue.
3. Ecclesiastical stage; When all these have failed you have to report the matter not to the police or court, but to the Church leaders. All things being equal, their judgment will be spiritual and final. Sometimes it can end in excommunication when a party becomes too adamant but the purpose is to enforce peace and justice through the Church.
The ability for LETTING GO is the leitmotif here. Pope John XXIII gives us a vantage formula here. He says : ‘See everything, overlook a lot, correct a few’. We must learn to overlook our brother’s sins and faults and correct the ones we can.
May God bless you today!