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YEAR A: HOMILY FOR WEDNESDAY OF THE 7TH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
HOMILY THEME: WITNESSES TO THE FAITH
BY: Fr. Benny Tuazon
HOMILY: (Mk.9:38-40) Wednesday of the Seventh Week in Ordinary Time
In today’s Gospel, John, one of Jesus’ disciples, complained to Jesus against somebody driving out demons in His name because he was not a follower. Jesus responded by telling them not to stop the person for he must be for Jesus rather than against Him. Jesus reveals here the broadness of His company. People may not necessarily be near Him or formally a member of His community to be one with Him. Unity in heart, mind, and will count most.
Three kinds of people come to mind here. The first are those who belong to the faith, those who were baptized, but lacked witnessing. They call themselves Catholics but their lives are far from being seen as one. Maybe they are one with Jesus in some ways but are very much wanting others.
The next kind are those who may not have heard of Jesus and the Christian Faith but are unknowingly living Jesus’ teachings. Fr. Karl Rahner, S.J. named them as “Anonymous Christians.” They are similar to the person who John encountered in the Gospel today. And I agree with Fr. Rahner. While it is good and advantageous to be baptized, listen to the Word of God, receive the sacraments, and avail of everything the Church provides, it is always possible, by God’s grace to live according to God’s will.
The third kind is the ideal one. Those who belong to the faith and live what the faith professes. This is hard to achieve but very possible. Belonging to the faith and receiving all the sacraments makes one dispose to all the sanctifying graces available. But sacramental life is not just reception of the sacraments. There is a task involved. The sacraments must be lived. The faithful must make use of the graces received and witness to other baptized.
Thus, the first kind is challenged to live the faith. The second is encouraged to avail of the services of the Church especially the sacraments. The third should witness to both.