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Getting Serious About Your Spirituality

Homily 03 03 2013
3rd Sunday of Lent C


View the Readings for this day

It is the Third Sunday of Lent. Time for us to get serious if this Lent is going to make a difference in our spirituality, in our daily living.

If God doesn't give up on us, who are we to give up on God?


The readings of this Sunday were chosen to help us recognize holy ground, to be aware that we can do spiritual things and never really become holy, that Jesus wants us to repent and bear good fruit.

Moses as a young man fled Egypt under a cloud of violence, his murder of an Egyptian. He married, started working for his father-in-law. Being a shepherd wasn't exactly a good job, but it was steady work.

Moses was minding his own business when God intervened with a burning bush. Moses noticed and was intrigued by this remarkable sight. As Moses takes one step in a new direction his whole life changed.

He found holy ground, he became a leader, if only a reluctant one because he couldn't convince God to send his brother instead.

What does this encounter tell us about God?

  • Our God cares
  • Our God gets involved
  • God knows our sufferings
  • God makes promises

God reveals a name so holy that the Jewish people to whom it was first revealed never speak it.

I am who am.

I AM will always be with us. God does not want us to wander alone in the wilderness.

If God could send a burning bush to Moses, a murderer, a shepherd exiled to the wilderness, surely God is catching bushes on fire for us.

As Elizabeth Barrett Browning penned...

"Earth's crammed with heaven and every common bush afire with God but only he who sees takes off his shoes, the rest sit round and pick blackberries."

This is not the season for blackberries; it is the season of burning bushes.

The community in Corinth struggled mightily with what it meant to be Christian. Saint Paul's letters to them were instructive, encouraging, chiding, and unifying.

In today's passage we see Paul warning them against overconfidence in their own faith and spirituality. Paul helps them see that even those saved from slavery in the Exodus, those who knew Moses and passed through the waters to safety were not all pleasing to God.

Some did holy things, saw amazing things, and yet did not become holy themselves. Surely we cannot be included in Paul's warning?

If we are not taking a step closer to God this Lent, then we, too, are wandering in the wilderness, lost in our sins.

Jesus in today's Gospel knows what's going on. He was not surprised that Pilate desecrated the sacrifices and killed his fellow Galileans.

But he also used this nasty event to teach that suffering is not the punishment for sinners, and yet we are all sinners in need of conversion of heart.

Jesus tells his listeners about a tower falling on eighteen people and killing all of them.

They too were not the worst sinners in the land. But we might be.

Listen to the tone of Jesus as well as his words. He wants us to know that he cares about us and our long-term destiny.

Don't become complacent or bored with being in love with God and following Jesus.

Like the fig tree, Jesus sees our future if we do not produce good fruit. "By their fruits you shall know them." Our fruitfulness is rooted in our faithfulness.

Can we see the burning bushes and hear God's voice calling us by name?

Are we overconfident in our labeled Christianity, Catholicism, or is our faith truly permeating our lives?

Are we aware of our sinfulness and investing in this Lenten time so that we may repent and not perish?

Jesus wants us to find a home in God's heart. It is never too late to become good news.

Garrison Keillor warns us, "You can become a Christian by going to church just as about easily as you can become an automobile by sleeping in a garage." What we're speaking of is the danger of presumed spiritual security.

Our parable says that we're not called just to be here. It is a clear warning against a fruitless existence in the light of God's grace given to us.

Somerset Maugham said it best in his autobiography, Summing Up,

"I knew that I had no lyrical quality, a small vocabulary, little gift of metaphor. The original and striking simile never occurred to me. Poetic flights...were beyond my powers. On the other hand, I had an acute power of observation, and it seemed to me that I could see a great many things that other people missed. I could put down in clear terms what I saw...I knew that I should never write as well as I could wish, but I thought, with pains, that I could arrive at writing as well as my natural defects allowed."

Somerset Maugham discovered the secret of genius.

The point is that life does not ask us to become what we are not. The fig tree was only required to produce figs. No more.

You and I are asked only to accomplish what our natural gifts allow, but we are asked to accomplish just that.


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Mass Schedule

Saint Aloysius
Tue - Fri - 8:30am
Sat - 5:00pm
Sun - 10:30am

Holy Days
8:30am & 7:00pm

First Friday
8:30am followed by Adoration until 7:55pm

- After weekday Mass
- Before Sat & Sun Mass
- Mon - 3:00pm

Sat - 3:30pm - 4:30pm
Or by appointment

Our Lady Of Lourdes
Sun - 8:30am

Before Sunday Mass

Find Us

Saint Aloysius
211 West Mason Ave.
Buckley, WA 98321
Phone: 360-829-6515
Fax: 360-829-5190
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Office Hours
Tue - Fri 9am - 12:00pm

Our Lady Of Lourdes
506 Ash Street
Wilkeson, WA 98396
Phone: 360-829-6515
Fax: 360-829-5190
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