Homily for Friday of the 5th Week of Easter Year A
Theme: The Church must champion practical true love through just Exaltations.
By: Rev. Fr.Callistus Emenyonu, cmf
Homily for Friday May 15 2020
READINGS: Acts. 15: 22-31, Ps. 57, John 15:12-17
Love is a universal language that is not just verbalized. It is the first language that God used in creating man and so man hears it in any language, verbal or non-verbal. It is more pragmatic than theory, it is lived and acted not just spoken about and preached. Every creature understands it and responds happily to it. It is not resistible but magnetic; true love is not “rejectable” but happily and easily accepted. It is desirous by all and expected from and by all. Even animals with good emotional instincts understand it and respond friendly without violence. It is true when you treat even dogs, pussy cats, goats, sheep, horses, birds with practical love and provide them their needs as at when due in the proper places and time and in the right smiling mood. They respond in friendship and they like to be with the one who shows them such love. Come to think of the animals we call wild how they can be tamed by humans and you begin to see them respond with respect, fear and love to those who are in-charge of them. No one can tame wild animals with hatred and cruelty rather with love and care. You do not speak verbal language of the animals but they sense your actions. The deaf and dumb person understands real love, the blind sees it and feels it and they appreciate it and respond accordingly. It is only true love that cannot produce violence and quarrel or disunity.
Beloved, when Jesus said in the gospel today: This is my commandment that you love one another as I have loved you and he also added: Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends, a lot of meanings are deduced from it and they mean a lot. You do not need to preach love to others before they understand but you live it and they will follow. The church will not convert souls only by spiritualizing our preaching and trying to make all in the Church holy by avoiding sins but must also look into the things we ought to do that we have left undone and the things we do that we ought not do. Jesus Christ did not do only Temple and Synagogue prayers for people who come into them but worked for people and the entire people despite religion and race and granted them release from unjust structures. A necessary part of the Church’s life is the social gospel. Here the Church acts as the conscience of the society and speaks the hard truth to the world and her leaders and takes lead in condemning and removing unjust structures from the society.
Where the Church exists and she does not speak and uphold true justice and provide peace to the troubled and succour to the afflicted then the Church has failed in her duty. The Church should not be silent when human beings are crying out in search of justice or in pain of being plunged into troubles. The Church must not delay when she sees people suffering but must encourage them by condemning such structures and work towards ameliorating the problems of people. She does this by prayerfully and religiously giving out social and spiritual exhortations. We are taught serious lessons today by the way the early apostles handled the issue of circumcision which was like a cage of gun powder and a ready to detonate bomb. The Church must have credible and trustworthy people like Judas and Silas to address the problems of believers and the world. The Church must have people that are strong willed and firm like James who can with the power of the Holy Spirit take good decisions for the church and the human community. Members of the church and the people of the world at large must be docile to the decisions of the Holy Spirit and Church hierarchy. People should be willing and ever ready to accept the decisions of the Church happily and act accordingly. The act of true love for one another is a commandment and service for their good is also a commandment, we must keep to the dictates of love and service for the good of humanity. If Jesus could give up his life for friends who are not blood family members, we are also called to do same for the other people despite where they come from and see them as friends and not as enemies. No one should be seen as a slave or a servant but one with us and like us.
May we remember that God chose us before our conception in our mothers’ wombs and given us the grace to become his true worshippers who would be useful instruments of peace and joy to others and conversion of souls to him. We have the onerous task to bear fruits that would last the taste of time. May God answer all our prayers as we do just this and attend to the social gospel of liberating the troubled and sorrowful, Amen.
Rev. Fr.Callistus Emenyonu, cmf