Monday, October 25, 2010

The short version

I never had a final version of my homily for this weekend. I had a first version that got slightly revised and re revised on Sunday. I'll try to type up a better version in the next few days.

The point of my homily from this weekend was that both pride and humiliation make us not want to be part of the community. Pride makes us believe we are better than every one else. Humiliation makes us feel like we are worse. The real gift that the tax collector has is that he recognizes that his sin, his actions, have cut his relationship to God and neighbor off. He comes to seek forgiveness from God to be justified as part of the church.

Part of the reason I included humiliation in the homily despite the fact that it wasn't explicitly in the readings was because of all the media attention on high school and college students who committed suicides. People don't often know that, by showing others who commit suicides, it makes suicide seem like an appropriate response. I tried to emphasize that nothing is so humiliating as to be beyond forgiveness. I emphasized that anyone who is thinking about suicide should talk to someone they trust; parents, teachers, me, or any other adult they trust. But I know that students who are in this position either feel like they have done something that is beyond forgiveness or that they have a problem that is beyond solving. We have to keep our eyes and ears open to the hopeless around us in order to be the hope of God.


Mary Ann said...

The Pharisee came to seek forgiveness, Father? According to Luke 18: 9-14, the Pharisee prayed to...are you ready...HIMSELF...not to God! His prayer to himself showcased his pride at being more righteous than the tax collector. I nowhere in Sunday's Gospel read of the Pharisee seeking forgiveness. Would you explain, please, am I missing something?

Fr.Dennis said...

Whoops! Made a mistake. Thanks.

A. Survivor said...

Father~ Thanks for touching upon humiliation/suicide in your homily Sunday. I know my own teens heard you and we were able to discuss it further at home. This cyberhumilitain/suicide is all right now for them, right in their faces everyday so for you to talk about this helps open up conversation at home. I have been discussing the cyberbullying/humilation with my Faith Formation class. We have had some issues with the cyberbullying. They don't get how hurtful some of their words can be and how horrible some of what they say on facebook truly is.

So, even though it might not directly tie into the gospel reading I know it worked very well into my past and future faith formation classes! THanks!

joyfulcolors said...

Thanks for being so vulnerable, so transparent, in the homily on Saturday.

I often wonder if the Pharisee had any awareness of how offensive he was in his pride. It's so easy to be blind to my own pride, while keenly, critically, aware of that sin in another person. When sinful pride in others irritates me the most, it seems it's a mirror to me of my own self.

Again, thanks for the homily, Father.

Jeb said...

Too true Father. Personally I find one of the biggest struggles is with self-humiliation and scrupulosity, false humility.

It seems there's a lack of distinction in society between taking pride and being prideful, and between having humility and being humiliated. Perhaps we need new words?