YEAR C: HOMILY FOR THE 7TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
HOMILY THEME: LOVE YOUR ENEMIES, LOVE ONE ANOTHER….”Be merciful, just as your Father is
BY: Fr. Josep Miquel BOMBARDÓ
HOMILY: Today, we hear our Lord saying some words that invite us to live the Christian Charity as fully as He did («Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing’»: Lk 23:34). This has been the bearing of our brothers preceding us to the glory of Heaven and Saints, for they tried to live a model of Christian Charity with loving perfection, following what Jesus Christ had said: «Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect» (Mt 5:48).
Charity urges us to love, in the first place, those who love us. It is not possible to abide by what we read in the Gospel if we do not sincerely love our brothers, those next to us. But, right away, Christ’s new commandment calls us to reach to the perfection of Charity, and encourages us to open our arms to all men, to those who do not belong amongst ourselves, or who want to offend or hurt us in someway. Jesus is exhorting us to have a Heart like His, like his Father’s: «Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful» (Lk 6:36), a heart that knows no borders, that welcomes everybody, and invites us to forgive and pray for our enemies.
However, as the Catechism of the Catholic Church affirms, «it is not possible to observe the Commandments of our Lord if we are trying to follow the Divine model only from the outside. It must be a vital participation, that comes all the way from deep inside our heart, in sanctity, in mercifulness and in the love of God». Blessed Newman wrote: «O Jesus! Help us to spread your fragrance everywhere we go. Flood our souls with your spirit and life. Penetrate and possess our whole being, so utterly, that our lives may only be a radiance of Yours (…). That every soul, we come in contact with, may feel Your presence in our soul. The light, O Jesus, will be all from You, none of it will be ours. It will be You shining on others through us». We shall love, forgive and embrace others only if our heart is magnified by our love for Christ.
Fr. Josep Miquel BOMBARDÓ (Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain)
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