“YOU HAVE THE MESSAGE OF ETERNAL LIFE”
22nd Sunday Ordinary Time Year B
For four Sundays we have been hearing from Jesus about the Bread of Life. But his teaching sounds absurd, unreasonable, “intolerable”. Yet
- Nobody has ever spoken like him, the temple police reported to their superiors
- See the signs/miracles he performs, the healings, his power...
- He gives preference to the poor, the simple, the “mere children”...
Many of the crowd, even some of his disciples, leave Jesus and go away, shaking their heads. Peter himself is confused. He wants to say: We do not understand, but we believe the signs you give. We trust you... we believe...”we know you are the Holy One of God!”
It is decision time for Peter and companions, and for us, too. We, too, have chosen. At Baptism, God has chosen us (“electi”) and we, freely, have chosen him. Have we been faithful, firm, consistent? What kind of christians are we? Are we keeping the law of the Covenant (the 10 commandments) or do we keep wobbling, moving right (God) and then left (mammon, self-interest, pleasure seeking)? Even the great prophets had their crises: Moses, Elijah, Jeremiah...
Decision time: not only in times of personal crises, but also when the whole human society is in turmoil. This is a time of deep changes, frightening shifts in thought and behaviour. It is no longer possible to be christian and particularly catholic merely by force of habit, or go to Mass and then behave in ways that directly contradict the Gospel.
There is need to think and change:
- Christian marriage: faithful, unbreakable;
- Courage to carry the cross, Jesus’ way:
- “Thou shall not kill”: not even through surgical operation (abortion);
- And now homosexual marriage!
Some people say: Not in Africa! Yes, in Africa, too: many people defend it.
- “No fornication” Now there is also female condom, no more risks, everybody can do it freely.
There is no way to escape the challenge, the choice. Jesus asked Peter and companions: “Do you want to go away too?
Consider well where you can find true peace and happiness. What is your choice?