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Weekend Homilies
A listing of recent homilies delivered at my parish.
Una lista de homilías recientes entregadas en mi parroquia.
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  • Pub Date: Feb 28, 2021
  • 02-28-2021 - 2nd Sunday of Lent
  • Listen:
  • Reading:
    Romans 8:34-39
    Write:
    [Let us continue from our reading from Romans:] Who will condemn? It is Christ [Jesus] who died, rather, was raised, who also is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us. [We have heard that much already in our reading] What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? As it is written: “For your sake we are being slain all the day; we are looked upon as sheep to be slaughtered.”
    No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
    Reflect:
    Sometimes I do not understand the thinking behind how the Lectionary has been set up. The first part of what I just read is the last part of our second reading this weekend. In the following verses that I read follow immediately after our reading. It is such a powerful section of the letter to the Romans that I am surprised that it has been left out of our Lectionary at this time.
    Paul gives us this marvelous list of challenges to following Christ. He splits it into two parts with the center part being a challenge to his understanding of his own purpose and life. He is quoting one of the Psalms when he talks about “being slain all the day”, as being “sheep to be slaughtered.”
    And again, he has these marvelous bookends for this simple statement about being a martyr for the faith.
    Apply:
    During this time of Lent, it is appropriate for us to align ourselves with the sufferings of Christ. We do that through the mortifications that we choose to do for Lent, the sacrifices we offer to Christ – small though they are compared to his.
    Yet Paul’s strong bookend statements that enclose this statement about martyrdom are really a rallying cry for Christians to stand firm with confidence in who God is and what he has promised to do.
    This section of Romans starts with the following phrase: “We know that all things work for good for those who love God…” And our reading today began with: “If God is for us, who can be against us?”
    Putting these things together with those bookends of St. Paul, it makes me think of a coach’s pep talk or the attempt of a captain to rally his troops. Listen to these rallying cries one more time:
    What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? … No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
    Oh, it thrills my heart to hear these words every time. It is one of the options that the church offers is for funerals, but it is not just simply of sadness but of a glorious triumph in Christ, because as our reading said Christ died, or rather was raised and is now at the right hand of God interceding for us.
    What will separate us from the love of Christ? Let the devil, the world, anything try to come against us and keep us from Christ! Nothing can succeed, not even the grave.
    This is our declaration of hope. This is our declaration of faith. This is why we are here today, or why you are watching this today. Our declaration is a declaration of triumph in Christ. In a few weeks, our Easter songs will speak triumph of the resurrection. While we subdue our joy on this journey through Lent, it is never without the knowledge of what follows.
    Nothing! Nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord! Amen.
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