Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sunday Mass - Jan 28, 2024 - Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Fr. Scott Donahue
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Homily Video

Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time Homily Transcript

We all have teachable moments in life, and thank god for that. When we learn something about ourselves and gain insight, how important that is. A couple weeks ago i was involved with a situation here at mercy home. One of our young men who is a junior in high school, he’s really a wonderful young man.  Like all adolescents, they have their moments of frustration and for whatever reason  

He came home and he was frustrated. Something set him off. Thankfully, rather than taking his fist and punching somebody, he took his fist in frustration and punched a wall. He was a strong kid and he put his fist right through the plaster wall. He was sorry, but the damage was done. Here at mercy home, we have teachable moments. Everyone gets frustrated, but when you damage property, 

You’re responsible and you have to do something to make amends. I met with him, 

With his youth care worker. We had a wonderful conversation, explained what was going on. He agreed that he would work here at the home, all the kids work at the home, but he’d work extra. He would earn some money to pay for the repair of the hole in the wall. Restorative justice, it was the right thing to do. 

It was a teachable moment for him, it was a teachable moment for all of us involved. Teaching with authority. How important that is. We hear in the gospel today that jesus teaches with authority. Even the unclean spirit recognizes that as jesus is teaching in the synagogue. He cries out, “what do you have to do with us? I know who you are.” In mark’s gospel, it’s the messianic secret where even the spirits are saying, “i know who you are.” Jesus doesn’t want to be revealed in that way. Nonetheless, jesus quiets the spirit and calls the unclean spirit out of the person who is possessed. He teaches and he speaks with authority. Even the unclean spirits listen. The people in the synagogue see and they listen to what jesus is saying. It’s not just what he’s saying, it’s what he’s doing. That’s a big important part of teaching with authority. Words in so many ways are cheap. 

But when words are accompanied by good deeds and actions by example, that’s what we call integrity. Jesus teaches with great integrity and with great authority. People are astonished. He teaches in a new and an indifferent way. He teaches by word and by example in a way that people pay attention. They want to draw closer to him and to the message that he brings to others. We’re privileged. We get to hear the gospel and the scripture readings, god’s word spoken with authority. We’re invited to listen to what we hear, to discern what we hear, 

To integrate what we hear, and then to put into practice what we hear, 

The very word of god as disciples of the risen lord. 

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