HOMILY FOR WEDNESDAY OF THE FOURTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME YEAR B
HOMILY THEME: A PROPHET IS NOT WITHOUT HONOUR EXCEPT IN HIS OWN COUNTRY, AMONG HIS PEOPLE
BY: Fr. Benny Tuazon
(Mk 6: 1-6)
In the day’s Gospel Jesus went back to His native place of Nazareth and encountered rejection instead of following like what many did in other places. They questioned Jesus’ credibility and person citing their knowledge of where He came from, who His parents were and His sisters and brothers. In other words, they knew Jesus so well that they could not just accept Him as one who can say great things and do miracles. Jesus lamented their attitude. As a result He told them that “ a prophet is not without honour except in His native place and among His own kin and in His own house.” As a result, Jesus was only able to do few miracles there.
As a priest, I have experienced what Jesus experienced. It took time for the people in our place to accept me as a priest. Their knowledge of our parents and my family mattered a lot to them. Most knew how I grew up and they certainly questioned my chosen vocation. At another instance, during our high school reunion, one classmate was surprised to know that I had become a priest. He approached me not only once but thrice asking me if I am really a priest.
I was quite irritated but I could not blame him because I was relatively naughty when we were in high school. As a proof, I told them to ask one of our classmate whose marriage I officiated. Even that fact could not convince him.
The case of Jesus in Nazareth is more important. Due to their attitude towards Jesus, few miracles were done by Jesus. Faith and trust are important for miracles to happen. Their doubt in Jesus’ true person were impediments for Jesus to work His miracles. Maybe we cannot blame the people. It was a regular human reaction. But in order for miracles to happen and graces to be available, we must be able to transcend the way and state of things. “Faith is the realization of what is hoped for and evidence of things not seen.”
We cannot just go on judging people by their backgrounds or from our experiences of them. What we can know of another person can be at least external and at most from what is told or intimated on us. Only God knows us fully. Thus, we must allot spaces and opportunities for people to reveal themselves to us. In the same way, we must allow God to reveal Himself to us. Though we may not fully know God well because He is much much greater than us. What we can know of Him should be enough for us to know ourselves and our purpose. Openness, in this case, is the best policy!