SUNDAY HOMILIES

SSCC - SUNDAY HOMILIES FOR ALL YEAR ROUND 

As lay associates, sisters and brothers of the Ireland England Province of the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus & Mary, we are priviliged to be able to offer you some thoughts and reflections on our Sunday readings. We start this sharing with homilies that have been prepared for Advent 2018, beginning with the Vigil Mass for Dec. 1st.  Many of our lay associates, sisters and brothers have contributed to putting together for the first time, homilies which cover every Sunday of the Liturgical year.  We hope that you will find this service to be of assistance to you in your ministry or just as an opportunity for you to reflect and to pray on the various themes that these reading have to offer us.

preach gospel always

10.  Homilies for 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time & Christ the King 2019 can be accessed by clicking here.
Each week on a Monday, we will try to post the homily for the following w/e on this Homily Homepage.  (See previous homilies at the bottom of the page)   


THIRTY-THIRD SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME – YEAR C by Fr Alexis Nayak sscc

About two weeks ago I was in conversation with a group of Hindu students who are doing their studies in different professional fields, such as in civil bureaucracy, information technology, business management etc. During our conversation one of the topical questions on which we delved into was: what is the ultimate destiny of a human person irrespective of our religions and faiths? A common response that resonated among ourselves was: Salvation (moksha) – and yes, it is our salvation. This is what a person of faith in God seeks and longs for. This is what you and I as the disciples of Jesus seek and long for.

The Hindus strive for salvation through the process of reincarnation and rebirth; whereas, for us Christians, who believe in the person of Jesus Christ and in his God whom he called Abba – Father, salvation has already been won by the Father once and for all through his Son Jesus Christ by his self-giving life, love, death and resurrection. And for a Christian, like you and I, our call to become recipients of God’s gratuitous offer of salvation through his Son Jesus Christ is a call to discipleship. This call to discipleship is a costly affair which denounces the values proposed by the world and seeks the values of the Kingdom of Heaven! This also demands that we follow him “on the way” of suffering and death in faith as he did. For, our mere being Christians, and not being disciples, does not guarantee us our salvation. During the public ministry of Jesus many followed him in the crowd, but a very few believed in him and became his disciples. According to Evangelist John, it is a radical call to believe in the person of Jesus Christ so as to have eternal life – salvation in him (John 3:36).

Brothers and sisters, today we are on the thirty third Sunday in Ordinary Time in the liturgical year of the Church (Year C), and the liturgical readings of today are set within the context of the Parousia or the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ which is also severally called as the Day of the Lord or the Day of Salvation. Therefore, the Church has given us an invitation to ponder on the given liturgy of the Word and to make certain serious and radical choices/decisions about our life, faith, discipleship and our ultimate longing for salvation in the person of Jesus Christ who loved us and died on the cross for our sins. We, who listen to the Word of God today “here and now”, need to ask ourselves certain hard questions: Do our life, faith and discipleship really matter to us in our day today living if salvation is our final destiny? Are we really serious about them and how do they really affect our day today living as Christians?

The liturgy of the Word today reminds us that the Day of the Lord or the Day of Salvation will come. It may not come in my or in your own life time which is for certain, but it will come in God’s own eternal time (kairos). Neither scripture nor Jesus gives us any specific day or time about this “eternal time”. In its spiritual meaning, the Day of Salvation could be “here and now” – a “now moment” experience. But it will come. As St. Paul writes to the Roman Christian believers, the whole of creation is moving towards that moment of fullness of redemption (Romans 8: 18 – 25). If we do not care to take these questions seriously and keep on living our life in “idleness” as was the case for the Christian community in Thessalonica as in the second reading, we might be caught up unprepared and be found unworthy of the promised glory of God and the promised salvation of ours when the Day of the Lord or the Day of Salvation does come knocking on our doors like a thief.

Therefore, Oh Yes! Our life, faith, discipleship and our longing for salvation do matter to us if we truly are the disciples of Jesus Christ and the demands he makes of us if that’s who we are. As we reflect on the readings today, there are two demands which Jesus makes of our discipleship to him: our active faith in our daily Christian living which “works quietly” and bears testimony to the name of Jesus, and our virtue of endurance rooted in faith that withstands all sin and evil (our way of living), adversities and calamities (natural forces), terror, injustice and persecution (indignity, violence and death) in the world till the end. In all these, the Lord is on our side as he assures us, “But for you who fear my name the sun of righteousness shall rise, with healing in its rays” (Malachi 4: 2a) and “by your endurance you will save your souls” (Luke 21: 19). This is our rock of strength and hope as people of faith.

Notwithstanding God’s created creation is good and beautiful, if we look around the realities of our world today in which we live, it is no different from what the prophet Malachi proclaims to the people of Israel of his own time, or what Jesus proclaims to his own disciples and perhaps to the religious leaders in Jerusalem temple of his own time or what St. Paul exhorts to the Christian community in Thessalonica of his own time as we listen to the readings today. However, in the midst of such “counter Kingdom of God” realities that are in the world, there is also a promise made and an assurance given: that by our active faith and by our virtue of endurance rooted in faith, we will withstand and overcome all sin and evil, adversities and calamities, and terror, injustice and persecution in the world. Prepared, we will be able to stand before God on “the day of salvation” and we shall be found worthy of his offer of fullness of salvation in Jesus Christ. Then our life and our world will have been transformed. We who live by faith and the whole of creation will have been a new creation with the glory of God. Salvation will have been ours as redeemed children of God from all bondage of sin and death (Rom. 8: 18 – 25).

Therefore, the call of our faith and discipleship today is: that we make a turn-around (metanoia) in our way of living “here and now” from all that distract us in becoming “new creation” in Christ Jesus and wait eagerly with active faith, hope and love for that coming Day of Salvation; that we live each moment and each day of our life “here and now” meaningfully and righteously as if it were the Day of Salvation – the Day when we would be caught up with God in his glory. As the scripture says, “See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation!” (2 Cor. 6: 2b).

Yes, at first instance, the liturgy of the Word today is about “the end time”, but not about the end of the world (annihilation) with doom and gloom. The God who created the world in his wisdom is still good through which he continues to reveal himself. But what is proclaimed to the believers, with an invitation and warning, is that: all that stands against the original beauty of creation, original goodness of humanity, and the original covenant relationship between God and his People will come to an end, including the magnificent Jerusalem temple. It is not about the doom and gloom which we should be terrified by, and thus push ourselves into the dark corners in idleness and despair. It is about the total redemption of humanity and of the whole of creation. Hence in order to be recipients of that final and glorious redemption of humanity, let us make faith, hope and love the anchors of our Christian life and discipleship, and wait eagerly for the Day of Salvation with active faith and endurance here and now. Brothers and sisters, let us act justly, love tenderly and walk humbly with our God (Micah 6: 8) in our daily living here and now so that we may be found worthy before God on that Day of Salvation. God bless you all!

END

10.  Homilies for 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time & Christ the King 2019 can be accessed by clicking here.

9.   All homilies from the 29th to the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time can be accessed by clicking here.

8.   All homilies from the 25th to the 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time can be accessed by clicking here.

7.   All homilies from the 21st to the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time can be accessed by clicking here.

6.   All homilies from the 17th to the 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time can be accessed by clicking here.

5.   All homilies from Trinity Sunday to the 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time can be accessed by clicking here.

4.   All homilies from the 4th Sunday of Easter to the Feast of Pentecost can be accessed by clicking here.

3.   All homilies from the 4th Sunday of Lent to the 3rd Sunday of Easter can be accessed by clicking here.

2.  All homilies from the 4th Sunday in Ordinary time to the 3rd Sunday of Lent can be accessed by clicking here.

1.  All homilies for Advent up to the third Sunday in Ordinary time can be accessed by clicking here.