Homily: Twenty-seventh Sunday Year C Faith

By 11:32 AM


Homily Twenty-seventh Sunday Year C


Reading 1: We do not understand the ways of the Lord or the timing of the Lord. The prophet Habakkuk sees the violence and ruin around him. He witnessed the continual sin of the Chosen People, who rejected God’s ways. He cries to God to intervene with his justice. God’s answer is that he will chastise his people by letting their enemies overcome them and take them into exile. But after a time they will be restored


This is the vision that God tells the prophet to write down. He is then to wait upon the Lord’s timing. The prophet’s acceptance and obedience to the word of God is expressed at the end of his Book. For though the fig tree does not blossom, and no fruit appears on the vine, though the yield of the olive fails and the terraces produce no nourishment, though the flocks disappear from the fold and there is no herd in the stalls, Yet I will rejoice in the LORD and exult in my saving God.


In the New Testament, Peter’s Letter speaks to the question of why has Jesus delayed in his second coming. Peter said that Jesus is not delaying as much as he is giving the world time to repent and turn back to him. This is the time of mercy. But the day of judgement will come in God’s timing and way.


What is God looking to see in our lives? He tells Habakkuk at the end of our reading: “The just one who is righteous because of faith shall live.” It is faith put into practice that God desires to see in those who heed his word.


Gospel: Faith can be seen from the point of acceptance and belief in the mysteries God has revealed to us. This is the virtue of theological faith. In faith we believe that God is one and triune in persons, that Jesus is the Son of God and Son of Man, who through his death and resurrection has saved us from our sins. This is the faith we will proclaim in the Creed.


The faith spoken in our reading is the exercise of faith. It is the exercise of that faith with is the gift of the Holy Spirit which Paul speaks of in his Letter to the Corinthians. It was this faith that enable Peter to step out of the boat and to begin to walk on water. It was this same faith that moved Peter to say to the crippled man, “Rise up in the name of Jesus Christ.” And the man was healed.


We are called to exercise both aspects of faith: the virtue and the gift. In this response of faith, we are fulfilling our role as servants of the Lord, obeying him in all things. We are doing nothing more than what is expected of us.


Reading 2: Paul tells us to “stir up into flame the gift of God” we received through the imposition of hands. In Baptism and Confirmation

we were anointed with the oil of Chrism as disciples and witnesses of Jesus Christ. The Spirit we have been given is not a spirit of fear, but the power to witness the love of God poured out upon us.


How often we hesitate to act in the power of the Holy Spirit! We have the gift of faith but not the conviction in the power of God. We allow the fear of failure or the concern about what others think to hold our faith in check. To this Paul says: “Bear your hardship with the strength that comes from God.”  

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