- Mark 9.35-37.
Saturday, February 25, 2017
Saturday word, 25 Feb 17
Seventh Saturday of the Year (25 Feb 2017)
Homily of Fr. Paul Panaretos, S.J. on Weekend Directed Retreat
Oh, to be a child again! What attracts us to childhood? Some may desire youth; it always wanes. Others may desire innocence; its root meaning is not harming. It is not possible to live without harming or being harmed. Yet we can learn from both. We name our healthy learning wisdom. One of the church’s prayers reminds us God’s wisdom is gift and goal: God, you give us life despite our guilt and even add days and years to our lives in order to bring us wisdom. Can we recognize the shape of God’s wisdom given us?
Jesus taught his disciples God’s wisdom, kingdom-wisdom involves what human wisdom often rebuffs: humility, dependence, lowliness, simplicity, obedience, a willingness to love and be loved. Jesus taught them by placing a child in their midst.1 Shortly after people brought children to Jesus that he might touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. We can accuse the disciples of being dense; but that misses what the gospel hopes we notice: their slowness points to the mystery of God’s kingdom—human wisdom and knowledge cannot grasp it to tame it.
More astonishing is that Jesus embodied God’s kingdom he proclaimed among us! By embodying God’s kingdom Jesus made it no fantasy but the measure of Christian living. Childlike openness, wonder and longing to love and be loved together with Jesus’ Spirit and sacraments get us in touch with our true selves, creation’s crown. Childlike openness, wonder and longing to love and be loved together with Jesus’ Spirit and sacraments help us bring ourselves to Jesus and to bring others to him. The more in sync our hearts beat with Jesus’ heart, Jesus’ heart beats anew for the sake of our world.
__________Wiki-image Let the children come to me PD-US