Sunday Homily (Full Text)

Sunday Homily

Gospel Reading 

> Homily by Father Mike Kuse

> August 25, 2013 - 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time

> 10 AM Service

> Gospel:   Luke 13:22 - 30

> Jesus
> passed through towns and villages,

> teaching as he went and making his way to Jerusalem. 

> Someone asked him,

> “Lord, will only a few people be saved?” 

> He answered them,

> “Strive to enter through the narrow gate,

> for many, I tell you, will attempt to enter

> but will not be strong enough. 

> After the master of the house has arisen and locked the
> door,

> then will you stand outside knocking and saying,

> 'Lord, open the door for us.'

> He will say to you in reply,

> 'I do not know where you are from.

> And you will say,

> 'We ate and drank in your company and you taught in our
> streets.'

> Then he will say to you,

> 'I do not know where you are from. 

> Depart from me, all you evildoers!'

> And there will be wailing and grinding of teeth

> when you see Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob

> and all the prophets in the kingdom of God

> and you yourselves cast out.

> And people will come from the east and the west

> and from the north and the south

> and will recline at table in the kingdom of God. 

> For behold, some are last who will be first,

> and some are first who will be last.”

> Homily

> Is the Kingdom of God really worth
> it?   Have you ever felt sorry for yourself, or
> you've made a mistake in life?   To you it might be
> humongous.   To somebody else it's nothing.  

> But you just feel like, what's the use?   God's
> not going to want me.   It's at that moment that
> God always enters into the picture if you and I are
> listening.   And he will whisper, “I want you more
> than anything else.   I want you to follow me. But I am
> going to take you on an obstacle course, and it's on
> this obstacle course that you will discover, one day, that
> you are sitting at my table.

> We have to sit for a moment and absorb that invitation, and
> that's why this morning Jesus speaks to us and
> says,   “If you don't want an obstacle course,
> you are going to find it very difficult because you are
> going to take everything in life for granted.  
> Everything is going to be the way you like it, and it just
> isn't that way.”

> And he says, “I don't need words.   I want you to
> be people of action.”

> If you've been noticing in newspapers and magazines and
> the news media, as the world is celebrating the famous 50th
> anniversary “I Have a Dream” speech - what they are now
> revealing to all of us - is that phrase was not in the
> talk.   He had a speechwriter.   The speech was
> very well written, but nothing was coming from the
> heart.   As Martin Luther King saw these thousands upon
> thousands of people looking up and listening to him, and
> what was written in the speech was not resonating with his
> heart, and would not resonate with the people.   They
> were listening.

> All of a sudden he spontaneously covered the speech.  
> Then he said, “I have a dream.”   And then he
> brought it right into their lives.   “I have a dream
> that the people in Georgia will be free, and the people in
> South Caroline, and North Carolina, the whole southern part
> of the country, and the northern states as well.   I
> have a dream.” 

> All of a sudden everybody could connect, and they held
> on.   And so today we still are saying, “I have a
> dream.”    

> God has a dream for Jacob.   God has a dream for each
> one of us.   But Martin Luther King knew that his dream
> was not going to be fulfilled the next morning.   Fifty
> years later, that dream is being fulfilled.   

> Jesus also spoke to us. Only he didn't say, “I have a
> dream.”   He said,   “I am the dream.  
> It's all resting in me, and if you follow me you will
> set yourself free.   Suffering will never hold you
> back.   You will take any risk that is necessary to
> follow me.   And you will discover, as you follow me,
> that I really do live inside of you.   I sense your
> feelings.   I know when you're sad, I know when
> you're happy.   I know when you're puzzled, and
> I know when you understand.   But for you to come and
> experience the dream, I'm telling you to take that road
> that most people don't want to travel.   But if you
> do, 

> you will discover things about yourself - and that is that
> you will always be a person of hope, and everyone else is
> your sister or brother.”

> You've heard me say, and it's true whether it's
> in Haiti, or here in Quincy.   

> The best language that you and I have is: 

> to smile at each other, 

> to hold hands with each other, 

> and to satisfy the needs of each other.   

> God says to us, “Don't ask too many questions. Just
> know that if you follow and trust me, all things are
> possible in your life.”   

> And when great things happen, always make sure you get on
> your knees and thank God for making it possible.   The
> minute you think it's all about you, you are no longer
> on that path. You're creating your path, a path where
> people do not want to travel, and you don't know where
> it's going.   

> So this morning, we come here.     We know
> the person who is the dream. We know where we want to go.
> And as long as we can love and take care of each other, we
> will be sitting at the banquet table.   And that's
> why Jesus uses very harsh language when he's telling us,
> “You have to make choices in life.”   

> When you make a choice in favor of love, you shall never be
> disappointed.


> When you can pick up a crying child, you understand love.

> When you reach out to someone who is of a different
> nationality, or color of skin, you understand love.

> When you can walk into a hospital, and there is bed after
> bed of people dying of AIDS, or some other disease, that you
> can respond to them and just hold their hand -

> You know the dream.

> Life isn't difficult.   It's just that you and
> I have made it difficult.   All we have to do is let
> the love ooze out, and all things come together.   

> You won't have to knock on the door, the door will be
> open.

> *****

> Monsignor Michael Kuse is pastor
> of Blessed Sacrament Parish in Quincy, Illinois.

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