HOMILY FOR SATURDAY OF THE 2ND WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME YEAR I.
BY: Deacon Bill Frere
Gospel – Mark 3:20-21
“He is out of his mind”. At some point, I am sure all of my students have said something similar about me! Whether it was the religious feast days cook book or board game, a child’s world religions book of prayers or tracing their religious roots scrapbook or a photo album of Chicago houses of worship, or trying to figure out my method of creating seating charts, they must have muttered words like that under their breath. And I have to admit, they were right. There was always this sense of unique (they wouldn’t call it that) and creative ideas that they were never really prepared for. But it made them think and look at things from a different perspective. The projects and wacky tests were never really easy but they did make my kids really reflect on what they learned and to frame that knowledge into something new!
Crazy! Out of His mind! That is what we hear the people of Capernaum call Jesus! And aren’t they correct? He speaks with and casts out demons. He now has a following of 12 men, most of whom are simple fishermen and neighbors, poor and uneducated men who have left home and family to follow Him. He eats with tax collectors and sinners and has the gall to interact with lepers and women! He preaches love of neighbor, of enemies and even Gentiles! He says to call God our Father! Don’t judge and turn the other cheek! Take care of the poor and live out the Beatitudes! Crazy! Seriously crazy!
And yet, when you think about it, aren’t we all a bit crazy? To be a practicing Christian in this world of power and greed and excess, is it that hard to imagine that the rest of the world sees us as out of our minds?
No one ever said being Christian would be easy! Christianity preaches a radical message of love and respect for all people, all life. It calls us to live a self-less life and believe that suffering is redemptive and transformative. Bishop Barron once reflected that “it is not about modernizing the Church but Christifying the world.” That means staying faithful to Jesus’ message in spite of a world that challenges our beliefs at every turn and mocks Christianity as being too difficult, too impractical to follow.
So here’s to the craziness in all of us who call ourselves disciples of Christ!
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