2017 Homilies (Written)

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John 15:9-17; 5-6-2018 (As Built; AMITE #304)

 

  • Sacrifice…Sacrifice…
  1. The year is about 1880-1890…His name is Frank…Frank lives in the big city…He lives in the Big Apple…New York City…He is a farm boy in New York City…Him and his brother Charles…they live with their father on the farm…That’s what they do…until that proverbial day… Frank goes to his dad and says… you know dad, I think I want to be in the dry goods business… And he said…son I’m not sure that’s the right thing but be that as it may…your welcome to go… It goes and works for a guy…he’s there for about two weeks…The owner of the dry goods business says…Frank…you are absolutely inept at selling anything… your horrific… Your just not good… Today you’re my delivery boy… and as a result… you will run the errands…drop off goods… pick up goods… clean windows… and if you come back in and you see any stickers that have fallen off the cans you put them back on…That lasted maybe a week…He goes back home…works on the farm a little bit more…starts talking to his brother Charles… He tells Charles… man ever since I was a little boy I’ve always wanted to be in the dry goods business… We even played the store game where we sold dry goods… He said…we need to go in the dry goods business…He said Frank… you just got fired … You weren’t there a month in a half… what could you have possibly learned… putting stickers on cans… He said first of all how much is it gonna cost?... He said about $300 for us to get in the business… He said we don’t have $300… He said…well let’s just say we can get it… He said…what did you learn?... He said…you know what I learned… that if we keep the prices simple…and in between a real small range… you’ll sell anything… because the things that sell in that store are between 5 cents and a dime… 5 cents and a dime…That’s my only hint coming down the path…I’m just telling you… Man B&S in Christ…sure enough they decide to start the business… And let me tell you… sacrifice doesn’t even begin to explain what happens… Man the days they have to go without anything to pay the bills… They have to bump and slide… they can’t even pay themselves… much less the light bill… but things hold on… And man can I tell you… things begin to take off… Within a decade 90 stores are already through the east coast… starting in New York… They generated so much money they built the largest building at the time in New York City… Today it’s owned by Foot Locker… but back in the day it was the business… Man B&S… it was the first 5 & dime… Now for most of our age groups that are in here… this is not Dollar General… this is not K&B… or TG&Y… or Rexall my B&S in Christ… Some people at one time called it Woolco… but before that it was Woolworths my B&S in Christ… And for the 30 people that got it… God Bless Yall my B&S in Christ... I needed you at the other Masses… But you know my B&S in Christ… and Frank and Charles would tell you… it all begins and ends with sacrifice… And that is exactly what that Gospel is all about…
  2. My B&S in Christ… listen to what the Good Lord has commanded… Love one another as I have loved you…And love is a verb… love is an action… love is sacrifice… You heard God the Father say it… I love the world so much I sent My Son for the sacrifice of many… So when you say that you love someone… you told them that you were going to sacrifice for them…No ifs… No ands… No buts…
  3. Now B&S in Christ make sure you understand… This is a 1st Century Jew… This conversation takes place at the Last Supper… He has justed washed their feet… He has now sat at the table… He explained the whole concept that He is the vine and we are the branches… He even went so far to make sure and say… you know this… You are absolutely nothing… without Me…Not better when I’m in the game… and you do ok on your own until I get into the game… We are nothing… we have no being… we have no essence… we have no life… and now He’s telling them right now that if you don’t go out and do what I’ve commanded you than your gonna fall short … It will not bear fruit… Remember B&S the first 4 commandments tell you what TO do… the next 6 tell you what NOT to do…but you better be doing something… So the whole concept… I’ve accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior… WELL GREAT, NOW WHAT…
  4. B&S in Christ… we started with 12 Apostles… there’s now over 1 billion Catholics in the world… How does that come to be if nobody is not doing something… moreover loving… Now B&S in Christ which Apostle throughout the course of mankind truly emulates this whole concept… Peter… the rock… Think about it … B&S in Christ… the Good Lord is already resurrected… He’s sitting by a charcoal fire and same type of fire in which he denied our Savior… Peter sees Him in a boat and swims a football field… 100 yards… just to be next to Him… So that he can hear the conversation … B&S in Christ… and it begins… Peter do you love Me?... Well yeah Lord You know that I love You… The Lord is saying do you love “Agape” like Me sacrificially… Peter’s responding… yeah I love You… The Good Lord is saying again... Peter do you… do you love Me… Well Lord You know that I do… PETER… DO YOU LOVE ME … Well Lord You know everything… You know that I do… I hope so Peter… because there gonna take you where you don’t want to go… and there gonna dress you like you’ve never been dressed… albeit upside down on a crucifix and according to tradition for 3 hours you will preach the gospel… That is agape… that is love… that is sacrifice… You know what’s amazing B&S in Christ… throughout scripture… everybody that’s in the Bible has paid a severe sacrifice but their name is in the Book of Life… All eternity…
  5. The Blessed Mother gives up her Son to be the Messiah… that is a sacrifice… John the Baptist gives up his life… to be the forerunner so that the Good Lord can be great and he can be reduced to nothing… You know what’s amazing B&S in Christ… Peter gave up his family… his occupation…his business for him… You know what’s amazing B&S… Veronica gave up her veil… she doesn’t have multiple veils B&S in Christ… we do not have a closet full of clothes… She’s given her bare essentials… and because she does she’s got the image of Christ on her own veil and now in the Book of Life… You know what’s amazing B&S in Christ… Simon of Cyrene… He’s just in Jerusalem… he sacrifices his name and reputation … Remember you’re a 1st Century Jew… He’s in Jerusalem to do the sacrifice… B&S in Christ… don’t you see the price he paid… You went their to give a sacrifice to God… and here you are getting blood on you… You know what happens when you get blood on you and you’re a 1st Century Jew… Your banned from the Temple… Your banned from the city…You can’t even buy and worship…You can’t even buy an animal… He’s done…and now your reputation which is now sacrificed because you carried the cross of a criminal… That is sacrifice… That is why he’s name is in the Book of Life… And you know who ultimately gave a huge sacrifice… and we think nothing about it… That’s Lazarus… the man’s got to die twice… so that we can prove to people that Christ is the Messiah… It’s not bad enough he’s got to go through the whole death roll… and the worry and anxiety… only now to be called back and to do it yet again later in life… My B&S in Christ… that is sacrifice…
  6. Well now here you and I sit 2000 years later… yeah we know about Frank and Charles Woolsworth… we also know about Peter … and we also know about Veronica and Simon of Cyrene … The question is… are you and I willing to sacrifice today… 2000 years later… Are we willing to leave work early and spend an hour with our family… no cell phones… no television… just to spend time with your family… Can you sit at the dinner table and no texting or phones… Don’t put the television on… you need bad news… wait ten minutes… it’ll be there you can turn it back on… Are you willing to sacrifice B&S in Christ when that phone call comes in and your exhausted... the days coming to an end… you’ve had all you can have… and someone calls you and asks you to run that errand… pick this up… stop this off… pick this up… pay that bill… Will you do it… and do it willingly… Not complaining… Not rolling your eyes… Not putting your hand over the receiver and saying… man ain’t this a piece of work… Or not even bothering to put your hand on it… just go ahead and give them the business… My B&S in Christ… are you willing to help your family out… and put that extra hour in… to make sure that your room’s clean… To fix what you’ve been promising to fix that’s been out there over a year that you haven’t even bothered looking at anymore… Are you willing to sacrifice to go by a nursing home and see the relative that you haven’t talked to in forever … knowing full well that time is not of the same to them… Are you willing to sit with them B&S in Christ and don’t roll your eyes… look at your watch… and say you gotta run… Are you willing to give that hour… so that you and my name can be in the Book of Life… B&S in Christ… are you willing to take that phone call from work… When it calls and you know that you’d rather be off right now but you take that call because… SIMON THAT’S WHAT YOU DO… AND THAT’S WHY HE HAD HIM CALL YOU BECAUSE HE KNOWS IT’LL BE SOLVED AND HE KNOWS YOU WON’T PUT A DECIMAL POINT ON IT… When that person calls… B&S in Christ will you take the call and sacrifice the time that you had… Why is it… Father they call me all the time… I got brothers and sisters and the only people my parents call is me… WELL I DON’T KNOW SIMON… WHY YOU THINK THAT CALL… Because they know that it’ll be solved… because they know you’ll offer the sacrifice… And if you want the grace to build on your nature… so that you can fight the evil one… stop complaining when the call comes and embrace it… Because you were called to receive the grace… So that your name can be in the Book of Life… Stop complaining… Man or Woman-Up and do what’s been asked of you…
  7. My B&S in Christ… I leave you with this… IF YOU DO NOT SACRIFICE FOR WHAT YOU WANT… WHAT YOU WANTED WILL BE THE SACRIFICE
  8. Amen… In the Name of the Father…and of the Son… and of the Holy Spirit…

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