Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time
A Pharisee invited Jesus to dine with him…Now there was a sinful woman in the city who learned that he was at table in the house of the Pharisee. Bringing an alabaster flask of ointment, she stood behind him at his feet weeping and began to bathe his feet with her tears…When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would know who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him…” Jesus said to him in reply, “Simon, I have something to say to you…”
Did you ever feel like everyone has the right to share their opinion except for you? Well, I’m here to tell you that you have every right to share God’s love and Commandments with others; and you can do that all the time!
Say what you need to say. Throughout the whole week I was trying to figure out what I was going say for this Sunday’s homily. It’s Father’s Day and the readings just didn’t seem to coincide with such a special event. However, throughout the week, I began to notice a sign from God. Every time I turned on the radio, I heard this one particular song entitled, “Say what you need to say” by John Mayer.
"That’s it!" I said to myself. “Say what you need to say.”Simon, I have something to say to you. Simon only knew one side of God’s face. He only knew The Commandments side. He only knew “Thou shalt not… Thou shalt not…Thou shalt not…” Christ showed him the other side of God’s face: His compassionate side. “Simon, I have something to say to you…the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little.”
My dear dads! One of the gravest sins we (I consider myself a Father as well) commit in our lives is the sin of omission. We don’t say what we need to say. We don’t tell our children what they need to hear. We must. They need it.
The sin of omission not only affects physical fathers, it affects spiritual fathers as well. Priests are under intense pressure to keep their homilies warm and fuzzy. Even the Universal Church is cautious as to what it says. And the media is thrilled, for it loves to attack us as much as it loves to revive us. It’s almost as if the media has the Roman Catholic Church in America on a artificial respirator. They control our preaching as much as they control our breathing! They won’t kill us, but they will definitely keep us highly sedated. In other words, they hate us when we go too far with the truth but love us when we preach what they like to hear. Typically, they hate “Commandments” but love “Compassion.”
As a spiritual Father, I know that it isn’t always easy to watch an adult walk out during a homily, but when I see it, it reminds me of a teen walking away from their mom or dad; walking away from someone who loves them. Well, to all my brothers in Christ, I say take courage and say what you need to say.
Men of steel. The prophet Nathan took courage when he confronted King David (cf. Sam 12:7-10, 13). Jesus took courage when he confronted his host, a Pharisee. Both men took courage because they knew God had their back. Fathers, you must do the same as well. Be men of steel. Be men of God.
Teach your children well. Do not allow them to repeat the same mistakes you made. Teach them the Commandments and be compassionate.
Complement each other. My dear fathers, when you got married, you married your wife for a simple reason: they made you a better man. In other words, they complemented you. Your strengths were her weaknesses, and her strengths were your weaknesses. Now teach your children well, for they can perfectly relate to the two of you, and not just physically, but also emotionally, psychologically and spiritually.
In many families, mom may be spontaneous while dad is a programmer. Mom may be more comfortable serving others while dad is more comfortable being served. A mom may be affectionate while dad is more reserved. Mom may be easily pleased while dad may be much more demanding. So which one is it? Which one is most beneficial? Which one is most needed? Both! For we do not want our children growing up thinking that people will be serving us always, and that we do not have to serve anyone. We don’t want them to live their lives “spontaneously,” without ever planning the future.
We need both. Our children need both.
Dear Fathers. Be faithful to your calling! Say what you need to say. Be clear. Be honest. Be wise. Be heavenly. Be a father in the image and likeness of God the Father.
Happy Father’s Day!