Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time
June 21, 2020
Father’s Day Reflection
In a year in which every thought of “at least things can’t get worse” has been followed by things getting worse, it seems impossible to turn one’s thoughts to something as normal as “Father’s Day”. How can fathers in particular and the Church in general understand the events of this year and assist our families and communities through them?
Who better to help with impossible circumstances than the greatest father in human history, St. Joseph? Reflecting on his words recorded in the gospels may be of help in wading through these foreboding times. No need to pull out our bibles. The eternal wisdom of the Holy Spirit inspired the evangelists to record not a single word spoken by St. Joseph. He served in silence. For fathers looking to guide their children, and for all of us trying to make our way today, there are three aspects of “active silence” that may be worth meditating on.
First is “intentional silence”. Let us turn off the TV and the phone and give ourselves time to process what is happening, time to be alone with our thoughts. If we don’t allow ourselves quiet times to work things out, it’s not surprising that things remain not-worked-out.
Second is “prayerful silence”. As we talk to God, we need to take time to listen to Him as well, to give the Holy Spirit space to answer our questions, address our anger, and write His peace on our hearts.
Third is “social silence”. When we practice the art of quietly listening to others not to respond but to understand, we open up an opportunity for an empathy that simply cannot happen otherwise.
Silence is not the end goal: by embracing the silence of St. Joseph, we are better prepared to allow ourselves to become the change that we want to see in the world.
– Bill Merlock