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14th Sunday in Ordinary Time
14th Sunday in Ordinary Time Homily Transcript
This gospel, every time I proclaim it or read it or reflect upon it, thinking about the 72 who were called and chosen by the Lord and then sent out to go out into the world, I think of an image of one of these pictures I have of my, I think it was my second or third real camping trip where I had to travel a long distance. And I recall that on this camping trip I was not prepared. I didn’t know what I should bring, so I really packed, I really packed the bags too much, so much so that this backpack went up above my head. And I have a ridiculous picture of it, it’s kind of silly. I just wanted to make sure that I was prepared for this week of camping. But of course, I realized before I left I had to reduce some of the things that I was carrying with me. I was carrying too much excess baggage. Well we call can relate to that in our own lives especially as we listen to these disciples being called forth. It seems that as they’re going forth Jesus is asking them not to carry too much with them and you begin to think about that and wonder is the Lord, you know, setting them up for failure? You know, how are they going to go out there without some of the things you would think would be important? But he’s not leaving them empty handed. But in their hands he’s giving them the message that the kingdom of God is at hand for you. And that’s an important message, you know, when you think about it. That is, there’s a lot there for us to reflect upon and for the people whom the disciples encounter for them to reflect upon too. The kingdom of God is at hand for you. It’s in your hand. Well think about the first reading. God is there to comfort his people. God comforts his people as a mother comforts her child. God is there. And so when the disciples are sent forth, of course they’re sent forth not with too much excess baggage that could get in the way of their faith, but they’re sent forth with openness to one another as they travel together and an openness to the people who will invite them in, who will open their hearts to them. And then also, finally, what does the Lord give them but the commission and the great mission to carry peace, to cure people who are sick, to be comforted, comfort the people who are there before them but ultimately to give the message of peace. I think that’s important for us in a troubled world that we live in. We too have to carry that message of peace. Not obstacles to faith, but the message of faith in a troubled time with the message of peace.