HOMILY FOR THURSDAY AFTER EPIPHANY
HOMILY THEME: RELIGIOUS LIARS!
BY: Fr. Benedict Agbo
HOMILY: * 1 Jn 4 : 19 – 5 : 4, Lk 4 : 14 – 22.
A religious liar is one who claims to love and worship God but in reality, neither loves God nor his/ her neighbour; He comes to Church but goes to idol shrines, swears and abuses the name of God and holy things like the Eucharist, does not honour the day of the Lord ( morning and evening) according to the Christian custom. We are told in the gospel that Jesus honoured the Sabbath day according to Jewish custom of worshipping in the temple in the morning and sharing the Word of God in the synagogue by evening time.
A religious liar is the one who claims to love God but hates his neighbour; abuses/ disrespects his/ her parents, commits adultery/ fornication, steals / cheats people, peddles false rumours against people’s names, envies his/ her neighbour’s property or neighbour’s wife’s property.
The mission of Jesus and of the Church should be to preach good news to the poor and oppressed, give sight to the blind and proclaim a year of favour for believers. Every Church that is not committed to this mission of alleviating poverty, ignorance and injustice is just a gathering of religious liars. In this new year, it is important that we tell ourselves the truth that many of us are religious liars and lacking moral integrity as believers.
Many of our Churches have simply turned into business factories and exploitation camps, not anything near salvation and preaching of the real faith. According to David Diebel, ‘Integrity is being what you said you are and doing what you said you will do’. The Church needs to look at itself critically again from top to bottom to really assess the focus of our mission.
May God bless you today!
FR BEN AGBO.