June 23, 2019 Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Welcome Father Cyril Today’s Readings: Zech 12:10-11;13:1 | Gal 3:26-29 | Lk 9:18-24

The readings this Sunday are strong because they speak about the necessity of suffering in life and about the suffering of the Savior. None of us humans, not even Christ Himself, really likes suffering. We much prefer a life that is full of meaning, perhaps has some small challenges or even large ones, but which does not involve really strong sufferings.

The first reading today, from the Book of Zechariah, speaks about events in the time of Zechariah but also is a foretelling of the life of our Savior. Any parent who has lost an only son, a son who was also the firstborn, knows the incredible grief that is described here. Anyone who has been close to such a happening can have at least some idea of this grief and sorrow. As we contemplate such grief, we also come to understand a small bit the sorrows of the Virgin Mary.

The second reading today is from the Letter to the Galatians and is a profound teaching showing how Christians are incorporated as children of Abraham. Far too often we forget that we are children of Abraham, children of the promise, children of faith. God will not abandon us. God is the God of the living. We are invited to believe even when it looks as if God’s promises to us are empty. This is the faith of our father, Abraham.

The Gospel from Saint Luke today tells us about Jesus conversation with his followers while they are alone and apart, praying. The words of Jesus tell of his sufferings that will come. Just as we do not want our friends and loved ones to suffer, neither do the followers of Jesus want Him to suffer. The challenge is really about how we accompany one another in suffering. The apostles had to learn with some very hard lessons that their task was to embrace the sufferings necessary to proclaim the good news.

Today on this Twelfth Sunday of Ordinary Time, we are invited to look at our own lives and choose to suffer when that is necessary for the sake of following the Lord Jesus. We must become accustomed to suffering without necessarily seeking suffering.

We must come to have the wisdom and knowledge that through the suffering of Christ the world has been redeemed. We are invited to be part of the redemption and we too will suffer. Let us walk forward in faith.

Source: https://christdesert.org/2010/06/homily-for-12th-sunday-of-ordinary-time-2010-cycle-c/ Image: Carrying the cross of Christ (Loire, Gabriel, 1904-1996); http://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu/act-imagelink.pl?RC=55872