Fr. Rick’s Homily: 32nd Sunday of Ordinary Time
November 6, 2022
2 Mc 7:1-2, 9-14; Ps 17:1, 5-6, 8, 15; 2 Thes 2:16-3:5; Lk 20:27-38
2nd Collection today: Triennial – Archdiocese of the Military Services
Three Parts to the Homily today. ALL of them very interesting.
1} Reflections on the Mass from the Eucharistic Revival offerings of the Diocese. Today we’re up to Reflection #5: Liturgy of the Word
2} Drawing from the Gospel today we’ll address The Eucharist and Marriage as they prefigure the Resurrection and Heaven – Becoming One.
3} And then back to the WORD as an essential part of Communion and relationship: Liturgy of the Hours
1} Read Reflection:
2} The gospel today is addressing the reality of the Resurrection and Heaven which was not at all a settled understanding among the first century Jews.
By the way, does everyone here today actually believe in the Resurrection? Good, that’s what I figured, so I want to emphasize the more curious point about our marital state in Heaven. Jesus says no one is married in Heaven. Yet, Revelation describes the End Times as the Heavenly Wedding banquet. What do we make of this? In Heaven the whole Church is the ‘spotless Bride’ and the Jesus is the Bridegroom. Marriage, in fact, is the model for Heaven and the Eucharist. This is very important to know.
Most people we know do not believe in the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. Most people we know, however DO believe that they have this irresistible attraction energy inside of them and there is this need for becoming one flesh. Most people don’t get out of their early twenties without latching on to or hooking up with someone in some fashion, maybe even including a sacramental wedding. The desire to become one is planted in us by God. But this desire, this attraction energy runs deeper than the physical, the emotional or psychological.
Most people, apparently don’t realize that beneath this physical and emotional attraction is spiritual attraction which really requires some careful and close attention. Just as in the Eucharistic prayer we say that we ‘become one body, one spirit in Christ’, in marriage the two become ‘one flesh’…and of course the body doesn’t go anywhere without the spirit tagging along… whether we realize it or not. The ultimate purpose of marriage is to be fruitful and to get each other to Heaven. This requires again, real attention to the common spiritual life of the couple. If people learn to pray well together and to communicate well together they will move into a taste of heaven; a state of genuine Communion. They will produce the next generation of disciples and will also produce the fruits of the Holy Spirit.
Fruits of the Holy Spirit: charity (love), joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, generosity, gentleness, faithfulness, modesty, self-control, and chastity.
Imagine a whole neighborhood of these couples and families. Imagine if they celebrated Mass together every week and felt this massive infusion of grace that comes from the sacraments. What if they went to Mass every day?!!! Not likely, but what if they prayed together every day… with the whole Church and for the whole Church…..This neighborhood would be, well…heavenly.
Of course we have left out here a large portion of the people who are not called to the sacrament of Matrimony. A lot of us are not. Do we just live without love and purpose and fulfillment? The type of communion, community and fruitfulness that I just mentioned is available to everyone. Remember the ultimate goal is not a reasonably good marriage with nice kids who keep us from dying of loneliness. The goal is heaven. The Heavenly wedding Banquet where we are living in this transcendent state of oneness with God and each other. But just like marriage, these communities of single people require lots of communication, prayer AND a lifetime commitment to a REAL COMMUNITY. This is an important message as well to those who might describe themselves as somewhere on the LGBTQ+… plane. They don’t need to reinvent the purpose of their body parts. They need to be in a community of believers who are praying together and becoming one body one spirit in Christ… just like everybody else. The fact that so many people seem so confused and so lost is a very graphic testimony to our unwillingness to be genuine COMMUNION for each other. The Eucharistic Preface today is particularly focused toward those called to the single and religious life. It reminds us that we are meant to experience on this earth a taste of what is ultimately fulfilled in Heaven. https://rcspirituality.org/finding_the_plug/preface-of-holy-virgins-and-religious/
3} The third part of the homily is back to the WORD. The type of communities described above require daily contact and communion. Most of us won’t go to Mass every day, but we can stay connected on a very deep and even global level. The Church has a 15 centuries old form of prayer called the Liturgy of the Hours. To this day these prayers are being prayed every hour of every day by someone somewhere in the world. This liturgy is kept alive mostly by priests and members of religious orders, but it is catching on more and more by lay persons who desire the deep connection.
Please today’s bulletin and our website for more on this type of prayer and join us on Tuesday or Thursday.
Let us now continue our journey together into this mystical union with God and each other.