MONDAY HOMILY FOR THE 1ST WEEK OF ADVENT.
THEME: I am not worthy to have you under my roof: give the word, and my servant will be healed.
BY: Fr. Diotacious Chikontwe SMA.
*READINGS OF THE DAY*
*FROM OUR FIRST READING*
In our first reading of today, we heard though the prophet Isaiah, how the Lord proclaimed of the future coming of His eternal and righteous dominion over all, when He will rule over all the people and the nations of the world, and where the old wickedness, evils and filth of this world will all be swept away and replaced with the righteousness and justice of God. They will all live in the presence of God, enjoying the fullness of His love and grace, and they will not suffer or have any more need any longer, because they will find perfection with and through God.
*FROM OUR GOSPEL READING*
The words of the centurion in today’s gospel reading have made their way into our Mass in a slightly altered version, ‘Sir I am not worthy to have you under my roof; just give the word and my servant will be healed’. It is strange that the words of a pagan, a representative of the occupying power in Israel at the time of Jesus, should come to be on the lips of believers during our most important liturgical gathering, the Eucharist. This centurion was no ordinary pagan. Jesus identifies him as having a faith greater than anything he had come across anywhere in Israel. What distinguishes this man’s faith was his tremendous trust in Jesus’ word, ‘Say but the word…’ He didn’t need to meet Jesus face to face; he didn’t require Jesus to come to his house. It was enough for Jesus to speak at a distance, and he believed that his servant’s situation would change for the better. In that sense, this centurion is a good Advent figure.
We are invited to join this great throng of people by identifying with this centurion. He shows us how to make this great journey. He was a humble man who knew he was not worthy to have Jesus in his home. He was a man of great faith in the power of Jesus’ word, ‘just give the word and my servant will be cured’. We are all invited to have something of this pagan’s humility and great trust in the Lord’s word. Advent is a season when we are called to make our own journey to the Lord; it is a time to open ourselves afresh to the life-giving power of the Lord’s word.
The Lord Be With You!
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