HOMILY FOR TUESDAY AFTER EPIPHANY
HOMILY THEME: HOW MANY LOAVES HAVE YOU?
BY: Fr. Benedict Agbo
HOMILY: * 1 Jn 4 : 7 – 10, Mk 6 : 34 – 44.
Nice question to begin the year with : How many loaves have you? What can you afford to offer? What can you contribute towards the solution to the problem in your family, community, church or nation? Yeah! Because many are actually complainants. Many criticize a lot without proffering better solutions. Many expect so much from God and from leaders without contributing their own quota. The circumstances of today’s gospel are that of exhaustion, hunger, scarcity, restlessness, etc. Jesus, full of pastoral love saw the people like sheep without a Shepherd and taught them many things. Teaching, healing, feeding, consolation, etc are services we can render to any such similar circumstances.
When the apostles wanted him to drive the people home to go and solve their problems of hunger and exhaustion, Jesus insisted that they must give the crowd something. And there lies the challenge of pastoral love. We must avoid negative confessions; counting the costs and sounding defeatist, doubting what the grace of God can do in problematic situations and getting finally trapped in the mire of escapism. Let me call this one PASTORAL ESCAPISM. As a priest, for example, you may escape from your job of feeding the people exaustively with the Word of God thinking that they are in a hurry or that their attention span is below 10 minutes without knowing that they are very hungry for that elaborate message. As a parent, you may think you are busy looking for money for the family upkeep and end up abandoning your children at the mercy of maids and school mates who may end up teaching them the wrong things. Jesus wants to know how many loaves you have this new year so that he can multiply your resources.
May God bless you today!
FR BEN AGBO.