Homily Second Sunday Year B Our call

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Homily: Second Sunday Year B


Reading 1: The prophet Samuel was a gift from God to his parents, who were without children for many years. After praying with great intensity, his mother was told she would conceive. Once the child was born and of age, around 12, is parents brought him to the Temple in Shiloh to serve the Lord. This is where we pick up our story.


God had special plans for Samuel. He was to be a prophet of the Lord.  At first, Samuel did not know how to hear or respond to the Lord. It was Eli, who discerned that God was calling Samuel. So he said for Samuel to respond the next time: “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.” When the young boy did, then God was able to prepare him for the prophetic role ahead. Samuel will anoint first Saul as king of Israel and then David.


The call from God is the same for each of us. God encounters us. He loves us first. So many things distract us, not allowing us to distinguish the inner voice of God calling us. But God waits for us to respond the same way as Samuel: I am your servant ready to do your will.  Like Samuel we must be willing to listen to the still voice of the Lord, to discern it as the voice of the Lord and to act on the world of the Lord. If so, maybe the same effect in Samuel’s life will occur in ours: “The Lord was with him, not permitting any word of his to be without effect.”


Gospel: The call of Samuel is reflected in the call of Andrew, John and Peter as well as in our own lives. It involves a personal encounter with Jesus Christ. The voice of God may be first heard through others like John the Baptist to Andrew and John. “Behold the Lamb of God.”


In the case of Peter, it was the invitation of his brother Andrew that led Simon to Jesus. Jesus intervene and invited them to get in touch with the grace of God stirring in their hearts.  What did Jesus share with them we do not know.  I speculate he shared his own story and what happened to him after his baptism. He shared how much the Father loved him and he loved the Father. He shared his awareness of his mission to bring the Good News of God’s love to others.


Andrew was so touched that he went to find his brother, Simon. He invited him to encounter this person, Jesus, who may be the Messiah. Jesus, in turn, encountered Simon by initiating a change in Simon’s life by giving him a new name. This was the first of many personal encounters with Jesus that made Simon, now Peter, to be transformed from being an unknown fisherman to the great Apostle and foundation of the Church.


God is calling each of us, encountering each of us. Like Peter we may initially resent or drag our feet in the process of transformation. We may fall short many times, but it is a journey of surrendering to the will of God. We belong to the Lord as his servant, who is called to do his will. In this relationship I don’t lose but gain true joy and fulfillment.


We just witnessed the simple process of what we call evangelization. Jesus invited Andrew and John to “Come and see”. They had an encounter with Jesus that changed their lives. Andrew sought his brother Simon and said, “Come and see.” He led him to an encounter with Jesus, who touched Peter’s heart.  It begins with a divine appointment, moments in our lives planned and set in motion by God for us to witness and bring others to Jesus.


Reading 2: What is that God wants us surrender? Our will, which can either choose to love God or to turn away from God and sin. When we sin we think we are expressing our independence and self-identity. But in reality, when we sin, we show ourselves slaves of our desires and tendencies and ultimately, slaves of Satan.


We forget that by virtue of creation we belong to God, who has given us life and the freedom to know what is good and right.  When we sin, we forget that it was Jesus who died on the cross and gave up his life to save us from eternal death, namely, alienation from God. We fail to remember that in baptism we became sons and daughters of God and a temple of the Holy Spirit.


As Paul reminds us, our bodies are not for immorality and self-indulgence, but to be holy and pleasing to God in thanksgiving for all God has done for us: creation, redemption and adoption. 

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