YEAR II: HOMILY FOR WEDNESDAY OF THE 34TH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME.
THEME: YOU WILL BE HATED.
BY: FR GERALD M. MUSA
Hate crimes, hate speech, and hate groups are on the increase. Hatred leads to social segregation, discrimination, harassment, verbal abuse, assault, and xenophobic attack against targeted groups of people. There are many reported hate incidents and these incidents show that people are hated not for any crime they have committed but because of their beliefs, race, gender, ethnic group, sexual orientation, political affiliation, or social status. Jesus discusses the cost of disciples and tells his followers they will be hated for standing by the truth, for being different, for advocating justice, and because of their hunger and thirst for righteousness. Anyone determined to live by the values of the gospel message should be ready to be hated and persecuted.
This is because the gospel message contradicts the way of the world and implies swimming against the tide. Moreover, Jesus assures his disciples of grace, wisdom, and protection. He says those who persevere to the end will secure their lives. Their patience will lead to triumph. This great sense of assurance led the Apostle Paul to declare: “And therefore I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and I am sure that he can guard until that Day what has been entrusted to me” (2 Timothy 1:12). How do we persevere and bear witness to Christ in the heat of hatred, persecution, humiliation, and discrimination?