14th Sunday of the Year C
Luke 10: 1-12-;17-20
Isolation is no fun. We are not meant to be alone.
No man is an island.
I think it was in Winnie-the-Pooh where Piglet, the wise philosopher said,
“It’s friendlier with two.”
Belonging and community are so important for our social development.
Families that nurture are suitable for their members and for society.
Neighbors who look after each other make for safer neighborhoods.
The same is true for nations who are in partnership with one another
than isolated governments who hold hostile positions
to countries beyond their borders.
Peace is more likely to reign when people cooperate and support each other.
How true the opposite occurs where mutual support is missing?
Gender violence, racial wars, ethnic hatred,
oppression of one class by another
all flow from the insistence on keeping power or privilege
at the disposal of one group only.
When two sides of society pull apart,
fear and suffering for all parties are inevitable.
All people or groups do is point fingers at each other.
This rift goes back to the beginning
where sin isolates male against female
and they blame each other for their failures.
Humankind is given another chance after Noah and his ark
but our arrogance to be like God and build a tower to heaven
creates a diversity of languages that makes it impossible
to understand their own kind.
With peace, justice and equality forfeited,
one side, the side with the power for the moment,
seeks an advantage over the other and
domination and oppression take hold of our souls.
People, usually the little guy, always gets hurt.
Is there a way off this seesaw into a balance of harmony
where we can care for each other again?
Where we can put the person before our agenda?
You bet there is and we are celebrating it this moment.
The redistribution of wealth and privilege in the reign of God provides the blueprint:
The first become last, the adult becomes like the child,
the poor receive the good news for a change,
healing comes to the sick, and new life to the dead.
This redistribution is by no means the easy way to peace,
but Jesus assures us it is the only way.
How long will it take to prepare the world to translate these terms into viable politics?
Jesus sent out 72 disciples and everyone back then
knew that it pointed to all the nations of the earth.
He sent them out two by two.
What is their message?
“Peace to this household.”
It’s up to the residents to decide
if they wish to welcome this blessing,
as Jesus warns.
Say those disciples rang our doorbells today?
Would their peace remain with us or
would we continue the terrible choices of our ancestors? –
unforgiving, arrogant, fearful of our neighbors,
condemn cultures we don’t understand
and people who are not like us must be misguided
or just evil.
Let’s all consider these 72 disciples knocking today
on the doors of our hearts.
They are forerunners of Jesus.
Welcoming them, we welcome him.
Closing our doors on them is closing our door on Christ.
Let’s do more than receive the peace of Christ.
Let’s deliver it in pairs ourselves.
Some are paired by marriage;
some by parent and child;
some are rich, and some are poor;
some are Catholic, and some are Protestant;
some are teacher and student;
others are siblings, and the list goes on.
If we don’t reach across the aisle to the other
in whatever circumstance we find ourselves,
the peace we bear in this Eucharist with Jesus
remains only an illusion.
it’s friendlier with two and outright impossible alone.
Prepare the Word.