Wednesday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time
June 12, 2019
Today, in Mercy, ah — here we are, back in Ordinary Time. Our journey through Lent and Eastertide has been completed and we now return to the “dailyness” of our spiritual lives and Liturgical Year. Really?
For the next two weeks, we will learn from 2 Corinthians. And from now, throughout the summer (or winter, depending on your hemisphere), we will listen to Matthew’s account of the life Christ. ( Some of you may want to pick up a good commentary on Matthew’s Gospel. My longtime favorite was The Gospel of Matthew by Daniel J. Harrington, SJ. It is out of print now but some good passages are available for free from Google books by clicking here.)
What we find in 2 Corinthians is Paul – when the rubber meets the road. Some of the first enthusiasm after the Resurrection has worn thin. The hard work of preaching the Gospel has spun strains of exhaustion in Paul. The very important Corinthian community proves difficult and resistant. Paul has already tried to deal with this dissonance in 1 Corinthians. But now, he has to raise some issues again.
In 2 Corinthians, we see a community hanging on to old definitions of godliness. Paul does not condemn the old, rather he challenges his people to fully put on the New Christ – the Christ of Mercy, Forgiveness, Calvary and Resurrected Hope. It’s a lofty challenge, particularly when one’s feet are stuck in the mud of “ordinary time” and old comforts.
In our Gospel, Jesus preaches the same message. He tells his followers that he has not come to abolish the Law, but to perfect it in the Spirit.
For some of us, it is a lot more comforting to hang on to the tried and the true, the words “written in stone”. But the Spirit of God will never be confined to stone.
The Spirit is always free, astonishing and alive. In the inspiration of these passages, let us ask God what new Pentecostal courage and hope God asks of us. It may be as small as a personal act of forgiveness, or as large as a Church welcoming previously alienated individuals and communities.
How can we announce God’s merciful heart for all people by the gracious exercise of our “ordinary” time?
Music: perhaps, if Paul were preaching today, this is the way he would speak to the Corinthians (Apologies to English teachers🧐)
Kelontae Gavin: No Ordinary Worship