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Saturday, July 7, 2012


Mark 6:1-6

      Homer used to be a patient in a mental institution.   Everybody knew him in the ward.  One day, he got well and pursued medicine with the thought of going back to the same mental institution to help those who were with him in the ward.  After he became a doctor, he went back excited to see his friends and announce to them that there is hope and he was there to help them.  When he entered the ward, all the patients were laughing at him and said to one another “Poor Homer, unlike us, he is mentally ill and he is a hopeless case….”

     All His life, Jesus was met with rejection: from the moment he was born until he died on the cross and all those times in between, He was rejected.  Whilst many people were drawn to his very charismatic personality because of His wisdom and miracles, His superstar-status earned Him the hatred and jealousy of those who despised him which eventually cost His very life. 
      The people of Nazareth could have heard the wonders Jesus performed in the surrounding areas and we would expect that He, being a Nazarean, would receive a hero’s welcome upon His homecoming.  This is very common for a town or a city to give a tribute to a local who has given them honour by excelling in a particular field.  They do this by offering a plaque of appreciation or maybe a motorcade around the place for people to acknowledge.  But instead of excitement and acceptance, the Nazareans took offense of Him and rejected Him.  The reason?  Not because of anything bad that Jesus did but because they were scandalized by Him going beyond His being ordinary.   They knew Him too well, at least they thought. And what about Nazareth? When Jesus was introduced to Nathanael as coming from Nazareth, he asked “Can anything good come from Nazareth?”   The inscription on the cross made by Pilate “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews” was meant to ridicule the Jews that their king came from Nazareth.  So the people of Nazareth must have thought “If we are doomed in our being ordinary, so you must.”  They made no exception, not even to Jesus as the saying goes “familiarity breeds contempt.”  Because of this, Jesus did not perform any miracle in Nazareth, which is very sad.     
  Are you scandalized by what is happening to the Catholic Church today with all its faults and imperfections?  Do you take offense because some of its authorities and leaders, bishops and priests, who are supposed to be role models of good living are the ones causing the scandals and scums? Of course we are discouraged and devastated and we want justice served to the aggrieved.  But if you are looking for a community of saints then you might as well be discouraged because you won’t find one, not even in the Catholic Church.  But if you are open to a community of saints and sinners both the faithful and its leaders, then welcome to the reality of the Church. 
      The people of Nazareth thought they were too ordinary and so why would Jesus who was one them should rise above their ranks?  For them, He was just too human to be divine.  Being members of the Church which is human and divine, are we willing to accept and support one another, sinners and saints together, thus bringing each one of us towards our goal: to be with God!


  1. an extra-ordinary homily from an ordinary priest!

  2. the recent program of four corners aired out by channel abc in sydney on the sexual abuse of some catholic priests had devastated and disheartened many of our faithful. we pray for the victims, their families as well as to the priests involved.

    fulton sheen once said that priests are ordinary men made extraordinary because of their priesthood hence they live in two worlds: the material and the spiritual.

    thanks to all those priests who continue to live the best ideals of the priesthood. they are the silent saints only known to god!