Father Rick’s Two Minute Homily for Wednesday, 5th Week in Easter 2023
May 10, 2023, Acts of the Apostles 15:1-6, John 15:1-8
Our minds can be so small, but that’s okay because our hearts can be so big. We all probably know someone who has left the practice of their faith and perhaps joined another church that is not Catholic. Something monumental is missing in our hearts.
Our Catholic faith isn’t a contest – who wins the most people. Our faith is an openness and willingness to accept and embrace people where they are in life and their faith. This can be very difficult for us to accept. However, it’s what Jesus did in the Gospels and what the disciples did in the first generation of our faith.
The apostles encountered people who were not Jewish. Remember, anyone speaking to a Gentile would be ostracized from the temple and considered unclean. The apostles remembered how Jesus cured the Roman centurion’s son and asked the Samaritan woman to drink water from her well.
Jesus is the Vine, but he is also the entire plant. At the first Council of Jerusalem, the apostles left judgment aside. They received a new commandment from Jesus: love as He loved them. Then it became much easier to welcome Gentiles to the Lord’s Table.
This embraces the cornerstone of our Catholic faith. We cannot keep our faith to ourselves. Each branch of the Vine penetrates every part of it. The time will come when all Christians can eat and drink from our table. The Lord alone knows that date.
But until that time, our responsibility is to mature in our love for Christ Jesus as he reaches out through us and embraces people we meet every day.
Do not be surprised when Jesus reaches out and touches someone you find different or difficult. Who might that person be? Someone who no longer eats and drinks with us? Pray for them and for yourself to be a loving presence of Christ to all.
Fr. Rick Pilger, IC