Thursday 26 June 2014

Friday of Week 17 Year 2

There are many places a priest or religious is sent to to serve a community for a certain period of time. However, if one notices, the priest or religious is seldom sent to his or her hometown or home parish. Even if he or she is sent there, it may be only for a short while and then he or she is transferred elsewhere. One reason why this is so is mentioned in today's Gospel.

In today's Gospel, we read: ""A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and in his own house." And he did not work many mighty deeds there because of their lack of faith." At their hometown or home parish, a priest or religious may have been known from a young age. People may have become familiar with him or her as he or she grew up. Some people may think that they know the person well enough and it becomes difficult for them to accept advise, criticism, correction or teaching from the person. Jesus did not work many mighty deeds in his hometown because the people there lacked faith in Him, and thought they knew Him well enough. In the same way, a priest or religious may also be unable to carry out his or her mission in his or her hometown, because of lack of faith in him or her. In this situation, we could say that for some, "familiarity breeds contempt" to a certain extent.

However, this situation boils down to attitude and a willingness and openness to be guided, even by a son or daughter of the home parish. Seeing how short we are in priestly and religious vocations, we may some day have not much choice in who will come to serve our community. Are we going to allow our prejudices and so called familiarity with a person to become a stumbling block in our efforts towards spiritual growth?

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