Homily for June 13, 2017
After giving us the way to happiness yesterday, Jesus proceeds today to show us the way to worship. He tells us that we are the light of the world and the salt of the earth and our basic calling is to act in a manner that always gives Glory to God.
The reason why Jesus is encouraging us to let men see our good works is so that God may receive the glory. However, by the time we begin to select when to be good and when to be bad; by the time our goodness become determined by the fact that people are watching us, we are no longer giving God glory. We have now become actors on stage.
One way to know if your piety is genuine is by asking yourself if there is any difference between your behaviour when you are in the presence of others and when you are alone.
The golden rule here is to act in a manner that pleases God at all times whether or not you are being noticed by others. Jesus tells us that a city built on a hill can never be hidden. This means, there is nothing that will ever remain a secret in our lives. The question is: When that which was once hidden from the eyes of men becomes revealed, would it give glory to God?
In letting our light shine, St. Paul tells us there is nothing like “Yes” and “No”. It has to be “Yes” all the time. This simply means there should be no double standards in our lives.
Many Christians today are divergent, we have double personalities. In public or in church, we have a way of behaving but at home, in private we change; we become something else. The very things we condemn in public, we swallow with delight in private. It is like we are trying to say “Yes” both to God and the devil.
Today we celebrate the memorial of St. Anthony of Padua. His life is indeed a great inspiration to us. Saint Anthony was born Fernando Martins in Lisbon, Portugal. He was born into a wealthy family and by the age of fifteen asked to be sent to the Abbey of Santa Cruz in Coimbra, the then capital of Portugal. During his time in the Abbey, he learned theology and Latin.
Fernando eventually received permission to leave the Abbey so he could join the new Franciscan Order. When he was admitted, he changed his name to Anthony. Anthony then traveled to Morocco to spread God’s truth. So simple and resounding was his teaching of the Catholic Faith, most unlettered and the innocent could understand his messages. It is for this reason he was declared a Doctor of the Church by Pope Pius XII in 1946.
Once, when St. Anthony of Padua attempted to preach the true Gospel of the Catholic Church to heretics who would not listen to him, he went out and preached his message to the fish. When critics saw the fish begin to gather, they realized they should also listen to what Anthony had to say.
He was only 36-years-old when he died and was canonized less than one year afterward by Pope Gregory IX. Upon exhumation some 336 years after his death, his body was found to be corrupted, yet his tongue was totally incorrupt, so perfect were the teachings that had been formed upon it. He is typically depicted with a book and the Infant Child Jesus and is commonly referred to today as the “finder of lost articles.”
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, free me from hypocrisy. Amen.
*Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Tuesday of the 10th Week in Ordinary Time. Bible Study: 2 Corinthians 1:18-22 and Matthew 5:13-16).*