2017 Homilies (Written)

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Luke 14:25-33; 9-8-2019 (As Built; Amite #368)
 
A. Price… Price… a price to pay…
B. It’s the 1950’s…1960’s… His name is Lee… Lee lives in Dodge City, Kansas… He is one of three children… His mom and dad are hardworking people… Know they aren’t a whole lot of money here… but he’ll tell you they never wanted for anything… He worked for the Post Office and she was a lifeguard… He said you know it was a simple life… but it was a good life… He said grammar school it was uneventful… He said high school… it was different… He said man we got transferred to San Diego… He said when we got to San Diego he said man more people faster pace it’s just different he said it was either sink or swim… So I decided to jump into the Drama Club… I started doing well then I jumped into the Choir… He said I became so popular he said I was like big man on campus… And then all of sudden he gets the award Most Likely To Succeed… Lee said he couldn’t believe it… He goes to college… He fails his first semester… He said so much for the award right… He did say it was an enjoyable semester… What he remembers of it… With that being said… he said man I got to get a job so it goes back to New York and he’s doing everything he’s doing the taxicab thing he’s waiting tables he’s running errands he’s riding a bike… And he wants to get into the actors academy… So he gives him an he meets along the way Vincent Price… Who opens the door for James Dean who opens the door to the movie A REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE… and as a result of it all of a sudden he thinks well man this is easy there is nothing to this… So he decides to go and do two of his own movies HELL TO TEXAS and TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE… Now you know … man he said you don’t know what starvation is he said talk about a price to pay… Man I couldn’t pay my light bill couldn’t pay my water bill… He said I’m trying to find a roommate he said man it’s everything I can do to keep off the street… They introduce him to Dr. John Wayne John Wayne says look will give you a bit part in GUNSMOKE… will get you a couple a little bit parts in different types of westerns… But then he gets the break he gets in the movie TRUE GRIT he plays the bad guy… Lee loves playing the bad guy… He’s good at it as a matter fact every movie he’s in he’s the bad guy… And as a matter of fact he’s in the movies like APOCALYPSE NOW… He gets in the movie WATERWORLD he actually plays the drunken assistant basketball coach in the movie HOOSIERS… Man brothers and sisters in Christ he’s in the movie SPEED with Sandra Bullock… OK look I don’t know a whole bunch of these my brothers sisters in Christ I’m gonna run a ground like I’m doing right now… OK… He played back BLACK BART… No he didn’t ok but that’s the point… Brothers and sisters in Christ…  his name is Dennis Hopper… OK I’ll never use that name again I promise you that… My brother and sisters in Christ you know what’s amazing… He’s talking to his son and he asked his son about school and life and he says you know dad I’m catching a lot of grief because you always play a bad guy and people are asking is he that sinister?… Is he that demented?… Is he is that diabolical?… He said son that’s the cross you’re gonna have to pay he says because I need to put a roof over our heads and clothes on our back and I just so happen to be a good bad guy… My brother and sisters in Christ it’s all about a price to pay… 
C. That’s the point of the gospel… The good Lord is talking to His apostles and is He’s asking them do you know what it means to be an apostle… There’s gonna be a price to pay… One you’re gonna have to pick up and carry your own cross… You’re going to be martyred… You’re gonna have to give away your possessions… Peter you have a family…  and man if that’s not enough you’re gonna have to love me more than you love your family… Now look stop your first century Jew… you know scripture like the back of your hand… You know the old testament from Genesis all the way to Chronicles… You know it backwards and forwards… And as a result of such you know all too well that the Greek word is called meiosis… And as a result of it does mean hate… but when God speaks you and I also know that sometimes He uses like a hyperbole… He uses extreme… Did He not tell you if your right hand causes you a problem cut it off… If your left eye causes a problem pluck it out… He’s talking about extremes that so what He’s saying is look you got to love Me more than you love your family… And you know what you and I would have gone back to Genesis and immediately known that when Jacob decided to marry Rachel and Leah he loved one more than the other… It cost him 14 years of his life so we would understand they are different degrees here relative… And that’s what the good Lord is pointing to… My brother and sisters in Christ you know what’s amazing as a Jew you and I would’ve had on our wrist a little box and in that box would’ve been a little scroll of paper… And it would’ve had the Shuma… Which would’ve been like The Our Father to you and I… And it goes something like this… I am the Lord our God I am one and you must love Me with your whole mind heart and soul it would’ve been a little scrool in a box and it would’ve been wrapped around your wrist… So when the Pharisees and all of them prayed and their garments dropped you could see “how religious they are” therein lies the point… He’s making point as a Jew that if you got to love Me more than your family then I must be the God that you have tied up in that little box… He’s trying to tell them I’m the one that you’re waiting for… And boy do they miss it… 
D. My brother and sisters in Christ look go back in scripture… All of our best players know how to pay a price… Think about it… Your Peter brothers and sisters in Christ you know the prices that man paid… Look… Start backwards and go to the end and go backwards… Here’s a guy that is crucified upside down for three hours… three hours… And according to tradition (small t) he’s still proclaiming the gospel upside down… Stand on your head for the homily for the entire Mass stay here two hours later… That’s the price that he pays… Can you imagine what he must’ve known if they kill John the Baptist… John the Baptist isn’t even in the game not even a year… And they’ve already beheaded him… What do you think they beheaded John the Baptist what a price to pay… Man you don’t even have anything then they’re going to murder your boss Jesus Christ… What do you think is going to happen to Peter… to James and John and James the Lesser what’s going to happen to Andrew and Nathaniel Barthelomew what’s going to happen to Thaddeus and Matthias and Simon and the other Simon and Philip and Thomas and Matthew… What’s going to happen to them they’re all know their time is coming… The price that they had to be to be Catholic Christians think about it… Longinus he wasn’t even Catholic and the minute he says truly that Man was the Son of God the One that we just killed… You don’t think… There’s no employment for him they got no pension plan brother sisters in Christ he’s martyred two years play later by the same people he helped to crucify Christ… My brothers and sisters in Christ there’s a price to pay to be a follower of Jesus Christ… There’s a price to pay to be Joseph of Arimathea… Simon of Cyrene hear you are all you want to do is celebrate the Sabbath… You’re here for Passover… For seven days I just want to be with my kids and my wife… And once blood gets on you you can’t even do that anymore… Now you got to carry the cross of a known thief… My brother and sisters in Christ… his name is in the Book of Life and you know what is the height of irony… Simon of Cyrene we don’t even know his last name just where he’s from Joseph of Arimathea we don’t know where he’s from just his first name… Veronica we just know her first name… Simon… My brother and sisters in Christ… Peter Andrew James John all we know is their first name but their name is in the Book of Life… That is the price that you and I have to pay… 
E. Will now here you and I sit 2000 years later are you willing to pay the price of what it means to be a Catholic in the world today… My brothers and sisters in Christ are you… Are you willing to make that sign of the cross clearly and distinctly… When they ask you to pray will you say I’ll pray and then make the sign of the cross knowing that more in that group will distain you for it will you break out the Hail Mary knowing that probably no one will be praying with you… If you do not knowledge Christ in public He told you and I that He will not acknowledge you in front of His Father… That’s the price that you pay… My brothers and sisters in Christ when nobody else makes the sign of the cross will you still do it… Will you brothers and sisters in Christ when you get up in the morning will you make sure that you stop what you’re doing and take time to pray… Before you get caught up in the world will you turn your radio off in your car as you’re driving to work knowing all the fun it’s there when you get there… Before you come home will you turn the radio off get off your cellphone will you sit quietly as you drive home… So you don’t spread that venom across the dinner table… Before you go to bed will you at least take the time in case He calls you home that night… From your lips to His ears to thank Him for the roof of your head the clothes on your back for your children your family for your parents to still be in the greatest country in the world that’s the price you and I have to pay… If you and I do not learn that everything begins and ends with prayer our life will be run a ground… We will get caught up in worry and anxiety we will wake up in yesterday and will be worrying about things that happened days weeks and months and years ago… And you will never walk through life… And if you do you walk through life backwards hitting everything in your path because you’re consumed about would’ve could’ve should’ve happened instead of what is happening… Or your consumed about what’s going on in the future… My brothers and sisters in Christ do you not understand there’s a practical side to life we came in the world on this day and we’re going home on this day… Everything in between is a test… That’s all it will ever be… Because on this day we’re going to get judged on how we perform since this day and if you and I have not taken the time to learn to pray and pay the price our life will be tumultuous you will not stay in the day you’ll be caught up with worry and concerns that have no business having your thoughts… My brothers and sisters in Christ I am begging you to start every day with prayer… I am begging you to bring prayer throughout the day… You will not go anywhere until you and I pay the price… And the price is prayer… It’s quiet it’s solitude man when you come home take the cell phones off the table… I mean how important is it… That you must not talk to your family that’s all we got… This is all you may have with them… Can you not just put them down for a second can you not just turn it off… Do you have to turn on the news do you expect it to be better by the end of the day… My brothers in Christ don’t you see… The evil one controls the world… You know what Padre Pio said… Padre Pio said when they asked him how many demons are in the world… He said two for every person that’s ever walked the earth… Since the beginning of time… Since the beginning of time two demons per person since Adam and Eve all the way through now and keep going… he said there’s so many demons they could block the sun and you think and I are getting out of here free… My brothers and sisters in Christ I am begging you to make prayer part of your life… Pay the price of having to get up earlier stay up later stop what you’re doing stop making the ball game the duck hunt the deerstand your way of life your way of life is Christ… There’s no other way around it… 
F. And I’ll leave you with this… If you and I do not pay the price now for success i.e. making it to Heaven… The price that we pay for failure will be even greater… Pay the price… 
G. Amen…
 

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