From the Deacon’s Desk 6/30/19

Dear Friends:

This Sunday’s readings are all about commitment. The reading from 1 Kings 19:16B, 19 – 21, when Elijah places his cloak over Elisha, it is a sign that Elisha is to become a prophet following in his footsteps. Elisha runs after Elijah and says, “Please, let me kiss my father and mother goodbye, and I will follow you.” Elijah answers “Go back! Have I done anything to you?” Notice that Elijah gets rather short with Elisha. In his question to Elisha, Elijah clarifies that Elisha is not being forced to do anything.

The Gospel from Luke 9:51-62 is similar. People tell Jesus they will follow him. Jesus explains to a person that all the animals have places to live but he has nowhere to rest. Jesus says to another man, “Follow me.” The man replies,”Let me go first and bury my father.” Jesus responds, “Let the dead bury their dead. But you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”

Certainly, these are not the words we are accustomed to hearing from Jesus. Jesus is trying to emphasize that following him is not easy. As a matter of fact, it may be more difficult than we realize. If you are truly living as a good Catholic Christian, you will have times that will stretch you to the limit. Sometimes things will seem impossible.

Jesus is saying that we must make a serious commitment to follow him. The way we follow him is by living our lives as presented to us. Whatever our vocation is at any time, we are to follow it to the best of our abilities. If we are students, we try to be the best students we can. If we are single, we live the single life to the best of our ability. If we are married, we are called to work at our marriages every day. As we live our lives, we are asked to pray, sacrifice and help those in need. You see, we are just asked to live the lives we are given as holy and prayerful people of God!

Peace and All Good!

Deacon Jim