Homily by Fr. Paul Plante
17th Sunday in Ordinary Time
July 29, 2007
Scriptural Reference: Genesis 18:20-32; Luke 11:1-13
As we listened to Abraham bargaining with God in the wonderful story from the Book of Genesis. I’m quite sure it felt familiar to most of us because there must not be too many of us who have not tried to bargain with God – do this for me and I promise to do something special for you. Give me a few more years, bring one of my children back to his or her senses, help us financially, break the vicious cycle of addiction.
Perhaps some of you bargained with God about coming to church today. How hot and uncomfortable does it have to be to excuse myself from attending Mass? How hot does it have to be so Father will have the common sense not to preach? Well if I don’t preach and God holds it against me, doesn’t that mean more heat for me in Purgatory? And if you come to church and I go on and on and you complain, does that mean more heat for you in Purgatory? Let’s compromise; I will keep it short and you don’t complain. We will both avoid Purgatory.
In today’s Gospel, Jesus teaches his disciples how to pray. We are given the precious words we refer to as The Lord’s Prayer. Keep praying the Our Father. It contains everything we need to know about prayer.
Jesus then elaborates on perseverance. It is not the most common virtue nowadays.
All in all may we take a closer look as to how we bargain with God. May we always pray The Lord’s Prayer with fervor. May we always persevere. It is a short program of spiritual success!