Fr. Rick’s Two-Minute Homily for Tuesday, 15th Week in Ordinary Time
July 18, 2023, Matthew 11:20-24
The words of Jesus, “Woe to you, Chorazin, and Bethsaida,” sound very harsh. But Jesus is giving a concerned warning. It is a fearful warning of what could happen to someone driving in the wrong direction on the interstate. Drivers honking their horns and flashing their lights are trying to say, “Stop! Turn around! Now!”
Are they commanding the person driving in the wrong direction to turn around? No. They are warning them very excitedly to turn around. It’s an alarm that nothing else is more important. Great harm can happen if they don’t change direction.
No matter how many miracles Jesus performed, His benevolent generous acts failed to change some people’s hearts. They continued to live the way they did before Jesus entered their towns.
“Woe to you” expresses Jesus’s sorrowful pity for people and sometimes for us. It is the deep sorrow a parent carries when their child is addicted to drugs or destructive behaviors. A child can forget all the good the parent did for them. It’s hard for the parent to imagine what could happen to their son or daughter if they continue down a dangerous road.
Jesus is never angry with us when we abuse His gifts and refuse to repent for our sins. Instead, we console the heart of Jesus whenever we examine our conscience in His Truth and allow His love and mercy to change our lives forever. So have no fear of turning around. Remember, Jesus calls us, “Friends” even when we don’t deserve it.
Fr. Rick Pilger, IC