Mk 12:1-12 Respecting Christ
I really do not look for a fight. It does me more harm than good. Yesterday was one of those rough and tough days. I have to admit that it started off pretty well. I had just finished the 10:30 Mass and I was greeting a lot of parishioners. They seemed very happy with my homily and the Eucharistic celebration. It is always uplifting for a priest to get some positive feedback.
One individual came up to me and greeted me. He was with a woman. We had a great conversation but this woman standing next to him did not greet me or say anything. In fact, she looked awfully perturbed. I asked her why she wasn’t smiling. I was shocked at what she said. “Well, I just don’t agree with what the Catholic Church believes.” I asked her what she believed. To my amazement, she said, “I believe that Jesus is my Lord and Savior.” I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I told her, “Guess what honey, we believe that too.” As I have mentioned in far too many homilies. I am not a good apologist and I never will be. My heart begins to race as if I am being physically attacked. My stomach begins to turn as if I had the worst possible meal. I continued, “Did you hear anything we said today? Like, ‘We believe in one God…We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ…’ Did you not hear my homily on how Jesus alone saves?” She spoke up. “Catholics do not believe in that.” Again, I had to control myself and I think I did a pretty good job up to this point. I reminded her that the Lord made it very clear that we should never judge, nor condemn. I replied, “I do not know what all Protestants think. I do not know what all Catholics think. I would never assume to know. But I can tell you what is written in the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Have you ever read the Catechism?” She looked at me and said, “Yes.”
I repeated myself again, “You read all one thousand pages of the Catechism?” She nodded her head in agreement. Again, she lied.
Let me tell all my readers something. If I had asked my entire congregation and that of St. Ann’s if they had read the entire Catechism, I do not think that a single individual would have raised their hands. I haven’t read the Catechism through and through!!! Parts, yes, of course but unless you’re a professor or a student, I would find it hard to believe. How could someone have read the entire Catechism of the Church and then falsely accuse us of not accepting Jesus as our Lord and Savior???
She knew I had caught her in her lie and so abruptly ended the conversation by telling me that she only reads the Bible. I told her, “Oh, the Bible, that’s the first book we wrote!”
Today’s Gospel is a reminder to all Catholics and Christians of good will (our separated brothers and sisters) not to judge the Bride of Christ or the teaching authority of the Church of Christ. For, “The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; by the Lord has this been done, and it is wonderful in our eyes.”
Let us respect the Son of God by respecting his Bride.