Local Homilies

October 20, 2018

Saturday of the Twenty-eighth Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 472

Reading 1 Eph 1:15-23

Brothers and sisters:
Hearing of your faith in the Lord Jesus
and of your love for all the holy ones,
I do not cease giving thanks for you,
remembering you in my prayers,
that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory,
may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation
resulting in knowledge of him.
May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened,
that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call,
what are the riches of glory
in his inheritance among the holy ones,
and what is the surpassing greatness of his power
for us who believe,
in accord with the exercise of his great might,
which he worked in Christ,
raising him from the dead
and seating him at his right hand in the heavens,
far above every principality, authority, power, and dominion,
and every name that is named
not only in this age but also in the one to come.
And he put all things beneath his feet
and gave him as head over all things to the Church,
which is his Body,
the fullness of the one who fills all things in every way.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 8:2-3ab, 4-5, 6-7

R. (7) You have given your Son rule over the works of your hands.
how glorious is your name over all the earth!
You have exalted your majesty above the heavens.
Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings
you have fashioned praise because of your foes.
R. You have given your Son rule over the works of your hands.
When I behold your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars which you set in place—
What is man that you should be mindful of him,
or the son of man that you should care for him?
R. You have given your Son rule over the works of your hands.
You have made him little less than the angels,
and crowned him with glory and honor.
You have given him rule over the works of your hands,
putting all things under his feet.
R. You have given your Son rule over the works of your hands.

Alleluia Jn 15:26b, 27a

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The Spirit of truth will testify to me, says the Lord,
and you also will testify.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Lk 12:8-12

Jesus said to his disciples:
“I tell you,
everyone who acknowledges me before others
the Son of Man will acknowledge before the angels of God.
But whoever denies me before others
will be denied before the angels of God.

“Everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven,
but the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit
will not be forgiven.
When they take you before synagogues and before rulers and authorities,
do not worry about how or what your defense will be
or about what you are to say.
For the Holy Spirit will teach you at that moment what you should say.”

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Homily October 20
Ephesians 1:15-23; Psalm 8:2-7; Luke 12:8-12
“The sin against the Spirit consists of knowing a thing to be good and hating  it because it is good.” Simone Weil

1~ Consciously or unconsciously we have often found ourselves sinning against the Spirit, whenever our actions are led by the seven deadly sins: pride, greed, lust, envy, gluttony, wrath and sloth. We have to be aware that there is no sin that is beyond the mercy of God. If one can ask for forgiveness,  mercy will be granted.
2~ To buttress the above point, Vatican II document, SC, 11, stated that “Those who approach the sacrament of Penance obtain pardon from the mercy of God for their offenses committed against Him. They are, at the same time, reconciled with the Church whom they have wounded by their sin.
3~ Then why is the sin against the Holy Spirit not forgiven? This is because according to St. Thomas Aquinas, one excluded the sources of pardon itself. St. John Paul II stated that blasphemy against the Holy Spirit may not just be in words, but “consists rather in the refusal to accept the salvation which God offers to man through the Holy Spirit, working through the power of the cross.
4~ This will be evidenced in total rejection of conversion, that is, the refusal to give up one’s sins. In the first reading, we saw what accepting the Holy Spirit will result into, which the Ephesians showed in their faith that manifested love to everyone. St. Paul prayed that they will live in hope. On the contrary, the rejection of the Holy Spirit is seen in despairing souls.
5~ Dear friend, “Once an atom of pure good has entered the soul, the most criminal weakness is infinitely less dangerous than the very slightest treason…” Simone Weil. The Holy Spirit is willing to help us to repent of our sins; His presence weakens the power of sin. O Lord, may we not close our hearts against the Holy Spirit today. Amen
“When the sense of smell in one’s soul is healthy, then we can immediately perceive the stench from our sins.” St. Augustine
May God help us to live in the Spirit this weekend

Fr Joseph Chukwugozie Ikegbunam
Holy Angels Parish and St Mary’s Parish, St Albans, Vermont