St. John Fisher Roman Catholic Church

30 Jones Hollow Road, Marlborough, CT 06447

13th Sunday in Ordinary Time C22

“He [Jesus] resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem.” (Lk. 9:51) The important word here is “resolutely” which means being firm, unwavering or determined. That explains why Jesus rebuked James and John (the sons of thunder) telling them rather harshly (rebuke) to just go on to another village, not wasting time from fulfilling his ultimate goal.

It also explains why he was so abrupt with the two who said they would follow him and the one to whom he said follow me.  To the first he replied to follow him means absolute trust in god despite having no place to rest his head; to the second, “let the dead bury their dead”[1]; to the third, there can be no hesitation in following him even if it means letting go of one’s family without a farewell. You have to be as resolute as he is. Following Jesus is a radical decision and journey.

But, there are other examples in the following chapters of Luke that are much more reasonable. For example, Jesus didn’t demand that everyone had to abandon hearth and home or their means of supporting themselves and their families. Witness Mary who sat listening to Jesus and Martha who was involved in the kitchen preparing to feed him and his companions. He didn’t ask them to leave their home to follow him. Those he cured: a crippled woman, a man with dropsy; Zacchaeus the tax collector who held a meal in his answer and wasn’t asked to leave his profession; and the 10 lepers and the one who returned to give thanks, dropping to his knees, who was praised and then told to stand up and go.

Most of us are like them, leading ordinary lives, going about our busy-ness, working, cooking, doing laundry, taking care of others, driving the kids off to do their things, going to school, writing papers or sermons[2]. Even the ordinary can be extraordinary, calling a person to reflect on God the Creator with gratitude when one is so moved by a sunrise or sunset that no words can describe or experiencing a sense of wonder when the sun lights up like scattered diamonds a field of snow or a stand of trees.  Even the things that are routine can be a disciple’s moment of joy. Having cooked hundreds of meal, suddenly you reflect that you are providing nourishment for your family, giving them life once again.

This is the first Sunday in Ordinary Time since February 27th , the first time the Deacon and I have worn green. It is Ordinary time because we are not preparing for Christmas (Advent), the Epiphany and Baptism of the Lord (Christmas Season), Easter (Lent), and Pentecost (Easter Season). I pray that you and I have extraordinary revelations in our routine and ordinary lives. We only have to have eyes to see and ears to hear and a soul to rejoice.


[1] That sounds harsh, but there is no hint that the man’s father had died. 

[2] An oral exam every week for me.

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