16th Sunday in Ordinary Time – July 17, 2022
Theme: Giving Importance To What Is Valuable in Life
First Reading: Genesis 18:1–10
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 15:1-5
Second Reading: Colossians 1:15-23
Gospel Reading: Luke 10:38-42
Homily by Fr. Romie- Jun Peñalosa
We Filipinos are known for our hospitality. It is part of our culture and foreigners often keep coming back here because they find it unique and loveable. Hospitality is as important during Biblical times too. Performing tasks of hospitality entails service; it is so vital in the church in welcoming our community.
The church, in order to grow, must be hospitable. Doing service for the people, making them welcome, and letting them feel they belong in the community. But sometimes, there is a danger when we begin to be too busy because of the service that we want to give. When busyness begins to trouble us, we become worried and distracted in life. So does it mean we will only just sit down, listen, and pray to God? Doesn’t Jesus want us to become busy doing works in the ministry? We can find then in our gospel today, that like Mary, Jesus wanted us to give importance to what is vital and most valuable in life. God reminded us that He is not against us when we are busy; when we do the work of serving Him and other people; when we actively participate in the life of the church as a community. What Christ is confronting in us is when we become too busy, we tend to become distracted and anxious and joyless in doing the works. Our focus becomes distorted and we don’t know already what direction we’re going through.
The goal of hospitality is to pay attention to your guest. But Martha failed to do this because she was distracted and eventually became anxious of many things. Many of us are like Martha, “worried and upset with so many things”. We worry too much and get distracted. But Jesus said in the scriptures, “Do not worry”. He keeps on reminding us; for worry doesn’t bring any good nor add many days in our lives. So, what shall we do then? “Sit down, rest in the presence of God and pay attention to what He is saying to us.”
We live in a culture of hectic schedules and live in times of relentless pursuit of productivity. We are tempted to measure our worth by how busy we are, by what we have accomplished in life, and by how well we meet the expectations of others. But then we begin to realize that our worth is not taken from our busyness, or how much we accomplished. We realize “who we are” and that we are God’s children, and He loves us whether we produce or not. Our self-worth is derived from our relationship with God Who dearly values our life! We often forget this, because we become too busy and become worried of many things. If our activities leave us no time to become still in God’s presence and hear God’s words, we are likely to end up anxious and troubled; we end doing a service that is devoid of love and joy and is resentful of other people. We are supposed to love and enjoy the job God has given us. A service to God without love and joy is nothing, no matter how great it is. Where do we get that joy? In His presence. Spending time with Him every day, listening, and resting on Him.
“Trying to serve God without being nourished by God’s words, is like expecting good fruit from a tree that is uprooted.” Same with us, when we detach ourselves from the presence of God; we don’t have time anymore to listen and experience His loving presence…we are uprooting ourselves and trying to produce fruit that no longer has connection to Him. Both listening and doing, receiving God’s words and serving others, are important to the Christian life.
Mother Theresa once said, “Don’t attempt to do great things for God, instead, do little things for God, with great love and joy everyday.”
MERCY DE LA CRUZ-ESPIRITU
iTunes Podcast: https://itunes.apple.com/ph/podcast/cathedral-church-saint-michael/id1139105076