Originally delivered on February 28, 1993
Readings: Genesis 2:7-9, 3:1-7; Romans 5:12-19 or 5:12, 17-19; Matthew 4:1-11
We all struggle with a God who is love and mercy who also permits pain, suffering, and evil within His creation. But through Jesus, we know that we are redeemed. In spite of and in the midst of all the meanness, madness, and idiocy of human behavior, we are loved and forgiven for our shortcomings.
Originally delivered on October 12, 1986
Readings: Kings 5:14-17; Paul to Timothy 2:8-13; Luke 17:11-19
There is no doubt about it — God can cure all human suffering, but His use of power is limited to opportunities to encourage our faith. The Scripture tells us that for the foreigners, God was willing to heal them, in order to help us to increase our faith and believe more in the Lord. We are called to grow in faith each day. We are reminded that in 1986, the similarities between lepresy and AIDS were so evident. Then, and now, we are called to be loving to all people just as Jesus loved the ten lepers in today’s Gospel. Our God is not merciful, but rather God is Mercy. In His image, we are called to bring love and compassion to all those suffering with human afflictions.
Today we hear the homily on the Prodigal Son. In the first reading, we hear of a vindictive God, ready to send fire down to the sinners. But in the Gospel, we hear from Jesus that God is indeed love and mercy. How many times must we hear this parable to let it sink in? How differently might we see ourselves if we trusted Jesus? If we were set free of our self-doubt and fear, how different we would be to our brothers and sisters. Delivered on the eve of the 1992 election, Fr. Healy speaks of the importance of the parable for that time where some were raised up by putting others down. In light of this parable in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, how do we rationalize our actions that hurt others?