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  • Rev. Michael P. Hanifin

† Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time †

† Fr. Mike's Musings †

Sunday, June 21, 2020

This weekend is the 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time. The readings from the Sacred Liturgy invite us to tackle the challenging issues of fear and trust — two concepts that are more important for us today, given current events and the evolution of our culture and society.

The Lord knows that facing down our fears and choosing to trust Him with all areas of our lives is an ongoing challenge. Jesus Christ our Lord cannot be outdone in his generosity and he reassures his disciples and us as seen throughout the Scriptures.

This Sunday’s Matthew’s Gospel passage is a case in point. In the span of eight verses, Jesus addressed the topic of fear four times:

“Fear no one.”

“Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul.”

“Rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body.”

“So, do not be afraid.”

And the reassurance continues. “Are not two sparrows sold for a small coin? Yet not one of them falls to the ground without your Father’s knowledge. Even all the hairs of your head are counted.” Notice that Jesus says, “your Father” in describing God’s intimate knowledge and tender care for each one of us. He is truly “Abba,” our Dad, and He knows us inside and out.

On many occasions, when Pope Saint John Paul II made any of his 104 foreign pilgrimages, he would reassure attendees at his audiences and Masses, “Don’t be afraid!” In 1989, I heard Pope Saint John Paul II encourage attendees at World Youth Day at Monte de Gozo outside of Santiago de Compostela in Spain, “Don’t be afraid to be the light to the Nations. Don’t be afraid to bring God’s love into your homes and communities.”

Let us stop wasting any more time with fear. Instead, let’s put all our energy, all our time, our talents and resources into trusting our great and loving God, using all that we are and all that He has given us to bring glory to His Holy Name.

Next weekend (June 27th and 28th) will be Father Douglas Zavala’s final weekend as Parochial Vicar at Saint Joachim Church. He will celebrate the 8:00 AM (Spanish) and 10:00 AM (English) Masses. On July 1st, Father Douglas will become the Parochial Vicar at Blessed Sacrament Church in Westminster. Please come out to Saint Joachim next weekend and thank him for his four years of service to the parish community of Saint Joachim Church.

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