2017 Homilies (Written)

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Luke 12:49-53; 8-18-2019 (As Built; Amite #365)
A. Side… Or stand… To take a side… To make a stand… 
B. It’s the 1775… our country… our colonies are about to embark on a war… Great Britain the Revolutionary War… everybody is choosing sides except this one guy… There’s no doubt where this guy stands… He’s already made his side… There would be no doubt which side that he would support… There would never be a question on which guy this guy who he would stand with… It wasn’t even a worry… I mean his dad was a former governor if you will or his grandfather… The former governor of Connecticut… He’s a Connecticut boy he’s a Colonist… His dad was a wealthy businessman… He himself a pharmacist back in the day… Now remember this is the colonies man pharmacist are like doctors they’re few and far between… As a result everybody knows him… Everybody was endearing to him… He was truly a patriot… And as a result man his business grew… He started his own type of library… If you will… That grew… He even went and bought three ships to do international trade… I bet you today if you went and looked it up again he would be the first international businessman… Man then all of a sudden the war breaks out and guess where the fight is New York City… The Battle of Saratoga… And guess what man if we lose this one there isn’t even a War to discuss and you know what’s amazing everybody gets it… Ever a war that the first battle been the one that decided the outcome so early… but yet even France sent people watch because let’s be honest if we don’t win that battle there isn’t a colony there isn’t a country… as a result man… Connecticut since the militia… And who do they put in charge there boy… Man were they glad to see him… Here’s the problem… He wasn’t the general at the time… The Colonist put General Gates up… They called him Granny Gates… OK can you imagine that really isn’t a good name for a general… My brothers and sisters in Christ… You need to make a decision quick on the fast and on the fly and man that’s one thing he didn’t do… It’s not a good trait to not make decisions and as a general the battle starts to ensue… Everybody’s choosing up sides well our boy gets a little bit perturbed… Starts yelling at General and says General you’re nothing more than a granny… Next thing you know he’s in the pokey man he’s already in jail the battles ensuing battles bullets are flying battles are going off smokes going all people are screaming… He can’t take it anymore… Next thing you know he gets in a brouhaha with one of the guards knocks him out takes his gun… No exaggeration gets on that guys horse runs right past the Colonist troops dead smack into the line… of great Britain… As a result you could hear the enthusiasm the confidence that the Colonist had out a nowhere there boy comes from being in jail… And now leading the charge… Now don’t give me wrong there’s a price to pay… He catches shrapnel in his leg man at one time it could’ve been fatal but he survives… Man we win Saratoga we win the battle of New York… Everybody can’t believe what this guy has done for the country… But Congress gives the award and the metal if you will to Granny Gates… And I got to tell you this guy is incensed he is thinking man I have given up everything my business I am 25,000 pounds in debt… From the start of the war… And this is just the first battle… I’ve lost everything… And even the Continental Congress won’t even get me like a higher rank I’ll never be able to pay off the debt I’ll never survive my business… he decides to sell West Point… He doesn’t own West Point… He has sold West Point to pay off the debt and he said provided you make me a Brigadier General in your army… Now we’re changing sides… Man my brothers and sisters in Christ you know what’s amazing… You know him and you know him as Benedict Arnold… But you know what’s amazing when they ask Ben Franklin what do you think of Benedict Arnold he said you know Christ was betrayed by just one man Benedict betrayed 3 million people… 
C. My brothers and sisters in Christ you gotta plant your flag… You got to take a stand you got to pick a side… That’s the gospel… The good Lord did you listen… And 15 sentences eight times He says it’s going to be father against son son against father mother against daughter inlaws and outlaws… He’s telling you there’s going to be divisions… Brothers and sisters in Christ He’s making it real clear yeah blood is thicker than water but My Blood is even thicker than the blood of families… You’re going to have to decide who you’re following… Man I’m first then your family… Now stop you’re a Jew… remember if you don’t study Christ as a Jew you’re gonna miss what He has to say… He’s born of a Jewish mother in the city of all Jews David… it’s the city of bread you don’t think He’s born in a food trough… a manger to eat… By chance… You don’t think John the Baptist said there goes the Lamb of God… You don’t think they’re not putting these pieces together… He circumcised eight days later in Jewish Law… He’s found in a Jewish temple… He’s crucified under Jewish Law… The Boy’s a Jew… So if you and I don’t study Him as a Jew we’re gonna lose what He has to say… Everyone of us back in the day would’ve known the old testament like the back of our hand… We would’ve known that when He made the proclamation: When I come I will bring division… That’s exactly the words of the prophet Micah… So in about the year 300 or 400 when He’s trying to tell people you want the Messiah to come… Because you think He’s going to hold hands and sing Kum ba yah… That’s not what He’s gonna do… He’s coming to make delineations… and he’s going to say who’s following Me and who is not following Me… As a Jew you and I would’ve said my God that’s Micah… Our parents were told of this our grandparents our great grandparents they would’ve warned us that’s what Micah said… And man all of a sudden we’re hearing Christ say it… You know what’s amazing… He flooded the world by water in the times of Noah… And then He said I’m gonna come back and now I’m gonna change the world by fire… Did you listen to John the Baptist I’m going to baptize them water but Somebody will bring the Holy Spirit… Pentecost little flames… Go back to the Old Testament as a Hebrew you and I know that every time the Glory Cloud out came down fire was intertwined… That means God is present… He saying this is how it’s going to be when He comes the second time… It’s not to bring you together it’s to find out who’s gonna be the follower and who is not… You are either in or you are out… My brothers and sisters in Christ go back in scripture… 
D. Every time the good Lord speaks did He not say the gates of heaven are small the gates of hell are wide… Did He not say I will separate the sheep from the goats… I didn’t say I’m going to make everybody apostles I’m only gonna make 12 apostles and guess what Judas leaves and Matthias takes his place He doesn’t turn the apostles to 13 so he can bring Paul in… Paul is not an apostle I don’t care how you count the pie… He’s not one of the 12 as valuable as he is and he is… He’s not one of the 12… My brothers and sisters in Christ there are 10 commandments He’s trying to tell you that’s how it’s going to be my brothers and sisters in Christ look go back in scripture… Every time of all people Longinus… the one that stabs our Savior… think about where he sits in the world… You are Pilate’s right hand man you have spent your whole life working for the Army… you were probably paid in salt… Solarium salary that’s where we get it from… Your whole life is wrapped up… If you leave the Legion you might as will be a leper because you’re not gonna be a Carpenter you’re not gonna be a fisherman… You’re a centurion and you’re the centurion… Can you imagine what was going through his head when he turns in front of everybody and says truly this Man was the Son of God… Wow… There goes the pension… There goes the profit sharing there goes my position here with Pilate… You know according to tradition two years later he’s martyred for the faith… Man he learned that he had to take a stand… And he might as well take it now… You ever asked yourself about Joseph of Arimathea… My brothers and sisters in Christ… Joseph of Arimathea your a Pharisee think about where he’s at in the world money prestige fame… He’s already got a tomb… Y’all a tomb wouldn’t even be in our radar… Because any plot of land any whole will work… there not gonna bury us by our name they’re going to bury us by a number… for him to give up his tomb you know what he just told all the Pharisees I’m picking a side… I’m planting my flag… He’s the Messiah… My brothers and sisters in Christ… Trouble will come to his door too… 
E. So here you and I sit 2000 years later… Are you willing to take a stand… Are you willing to plant your flag… when somebody asked you if are you Christian listen to me… Let me ask you… when Christ was in the world and they said are you a Jew do you think He hesitated… Well I got some Pharisees that are crackpots we got a couple Sadducees I don’t know what’s side their on so I can’t answer that… No No… He’s the High Priest… He would’ve told you right then He’s a Jew… So when they ask you are you Christian will you say absolutely I’m Catholic… When they say let us begin to pray will you plant your flag and make sure you make the sign of the cross… moreover if they say will you lead the prayer will you willing to put Her out there even though you know it might offend them… Oh… Oh I see… We have no problem we don’t wanna offend our friends but we have no problem offending Her or the Messiah… My brothers and sisters in Christ… There are seven Sacraments not six not four and three are negotiable… My brother and sisters in Christ… Confession is a Sacrament… go back to the Old Testament Leviticus five and six… You had to bring your goods or your sin if you will to a priest… And depending on what you sinned you had to bring a certain type of animal… I came to fulfill the law not to change it… that’s Christs words… Therefore if confession existed before it had to happen afterwards… So at what point do we get to the understanding that I can go to the big guy… Did He not say and Hebrews five I will choose priest among men for the forgiveness of sins and nobody is to take it upon himself… But yet how many times do I here well Father I’m just gonna go to big guy… Will let me help you the big guy hadn’t heard a Confession as a matter fact the big guy didn’t baptist anybody and if you wanna go one step further the big guy never fed the 5000 people with five loaves of bread and two fish… Which is 5000 men 10,000 men and women and probably 12 to 15,000 men women and children… He fed the 12 and then He said no you go and feed them because I’m gonna leave in three years then what… My brothers and sisters in Christ… you gotta plant your flag… You Gotta make sure that you honor the Church for who she… This ain’t a cafeteria where you can pick and choose on what you can decide what not to do… If you don’t understand in vitro then you need to come… If you can’t understand and surrogate mother hood is problematic in and of itself you need to talk to me… If you don’t understand why we do what we do then you need to ask the questions… Because we can’t rely on the excuse well I went to Catholic schools all my life father but I didn’t learn all this… Well it’s your soul… I mean that’s gonna be your excuse against the good Lord… Father Mark didn’t tell me enough… He yell too much father I tuned him out… Oh don’t worry I’m following you right after you make that pitch don’t worry I promise you I’m gonna get my 15 minutes… My brother and sister in Christ what I’m asking to do is plant your flag and pick a side… 
F. And I leave you with the words Ronald Reaganist… He said if you are scared to take a stand… if you are scared to take a stand because of pushback because of what people may say because of your clients your customers your parishioners or your friends… May I warn you that you are going to feed the crocodile in hopes that he’ll eat you last… You got to take a stand… 
G. Amen…
 

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