Fifteenth Sunday of Ordinary Time – Fr. Dustin Collins
July 14, 2019 – 8:30AM
May God’s Blessing be with each of you during this time of transition. This will be my final weekend in this parish, so please continue to pray for me and for Father McNeely as we depart from here. Also, please pray for your new priests, Father Peter Iorio and Father Andrés Cano. No matter your thought in this time of change, happy or sad, let all of us set our sight upon that which is most important: Christ Jesus, the Sacraments, the Church, and God. Each of these are unchanging realities from which our hearts should be comforted and our minds should be elevated towards this transcendent reality which is unchanging.
In any movie, television show, or book it is important that we have something that we can anticipate and look forward to. It is this that tempts us to skip ahead or to look up the ending before we get there. In its initial watching or reading any of these would not be interesting if we already knew everything about their content before we started. It is their mystery that keeps us engaged and looking forward to what is to come next. From our Epistle we were instructed that “Christ Jesus is the image of the invisible God.” Sometimes we approach faith as if we know everything that is being revealed to us. We no longer desire to be lead towards a transcendent reality.
Again we are told about an “invisible God,” but we would rather assume that we know everything about this reality which is infinite. If we know everything about this reality then we have come to tame God and have come to take ownership over Him. As was instructed in Deuteronomy: “it is something very near to you, already in your mouths and in your hearts; you have only to carry it out. “You have only to carry it out” which means we must be lead in search of it. In this manner we will be like the Psalmist who cries out: “Turn towards the Lord in your need, and you will live.”
Instead of going in search of this transcendent reality we have been left searching for the temporal. In our pursuit of the temporal we have elevated the likes of wealth, power, pleasure, and honor to a place of focus while we have lowered the transcendent nature of God. Our devotion is not to God, but is oriented towards the pursuit of goods.
Our Gospel instructs us: “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart.” Instead of loving God with all our heart we have elevated so much to take precedence over this reality. If there is a movie, sport, dance recital, or musical it becomes more important that one’s obligation to assist at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. As a reminder to those who have missed Mass without just cause you are to make use of the Sacrament of Confession before you receive our Blessed Lord in Holy Communion.
The Church must become an important voice in our life. The Church must continue to proclaim and elevate hearts towards this transcendent reality of God through her liturgy. It was no mistake that this man was left in the inn in order to be brought back to health for this is an image of the Church to whom our soul has been entrusted. To the Church we must flock not to receive self help or self affirmation, but rather to be elevated towards God. The more we chase after this transcendent reality the more we will let go of that which is not important and come to say and believe the proclamation of faith made by the scholar of the law: “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”