domingo, 26 de abril de 2009

3er Sunday of Easter (B)

Va la homilía del domingo. La foto es de la Misa de Catequesis Especial en Virreyes, de hace dos años.
Corresponde un agradecimiento especial a mi profesora de inglés, Caro Cura, quien me corrige las homilías desde Bs. As para que no haga papelones por acá
La misa la celebré en Trowbridge, un pueblo cercano a Bath (a tres estaciones de tren). El cura se había ido a bautizar un sobrino a Irlanda y me pidió que lo reemplace. Me llevé una grata sorpresa por la calidez de la comunidad y por la gran concurrencia (era sábado a la tarde). Pero mayor fue la sorpresa cuando me dí cuenta -recién en la comunión- que había un montón de chicos. Eran aprox. 50. Estaban con sus flias, pero durante la misa ni se los escuchaba. Al final hice una bendición con todos los inglesitos... todos felices.
Para Caro y Meru, madres de las hiper-malcriadas Inés y Totó, se puede ir a misa con chicos y éstos se pueden portar bien. No me torren más!!!

3rd Sunday of Easter

The apparitionAfter Jesus’ death, his disciples were perturbed and questions were arising in their minds. Although they had received several announcements of Jesus’ resurrection, or at least signs that he was no longer dead (the two disciples of Emmaus; the women who had been to the tomb but didn’t find Jesus’ body; the apparition to Simon), they couldn’t understand what they were hearing from others. Their minds were closed. Suddenly, Jesus appeared, standing among them, and their lives changed forever.

It might be a liberating tale for us. Jesus’ disciples, those who had been with him, those who had seen him performing miracles, who had heard him preaching the Kingdom of God, were perturbed. They couldn’t understand the Scriptures, they couldn’t believe in others testimonies, and they could neither realize that Jesus was alive, standing in their midst. Although Jesus asked them to touch him and see, they were unconvinced, still wondering, for it seemed too good to be true. Their minds couldn’t think straight, their paths were blocked; they remained behind, at Jesus’ death on the cross. They weren’t able to go forward.

This could happen to anyone of us when something terrible happens: a natural catastrophe, a terrorist attack, an irreparable loss suffered by the death of a child or the death of any person close to us, an incurable or dangerous disease, a loss of a job, a heated argument with a friend or relative, an economic problem, etc. In these cases we usually ask God if he is really living with us: “where are you? ...where have you been?” We feel that he is absent from the world. Our minds are not capable of thinking straight. Our paths are blocked. We remain behind, stuck to that moment, forgetting all that we had previously lived and without strength or power to move forward, to meet our lives in the future.

We are as weak as the disciples; it would be ridiculous to try to be greater than them. Therefore, there is no need to blame ourselves or anyone for not having the strength to go forward when something terrible happens to us. It’s useless, in those circumstances, to blame ourselves or anyone for not having the necessary clarity to understand what’s going on. But this doesn’t mean that we ought to remain in darkness, perturbed and paralyzed with fear. The brightness of the risen Christ could grant us enough energy and cleverness (wisdom). Nevertheless, we are receiving this light gradually, in the same gradual way as the disciples received it -according to Luke the evangelist-.

A new understanding of life (past, present and future)Jesus’ apparition to his disciples was certainly a new kind of experience, an alternate and lighter reality to our murky life (alternate= correlative, sequential, subsequent; another life, which differs but also contains the previous one –in a certain way-). His presence among them was so real and so shinning that they were capable of starting a new life, gradually understanding their past and decisively moving forward. But this was too good to be true, an attitude that many people often have after they had to suffer a lot. In fact, this attitude is expressed in a famous love song: “you are just too good to be true, can’t take my eyes off you…” which is precisely what the disciples were thinking of and feeling when Jesus appeared in their midst. That’s why he asked for something to eat.

By eating fish with them he could prove that he was the original Galilean, the same one they had known before, but at the same time, a new one because he had passed through death. Furthermore, the meal context is associated with the last supper, with the Eucharist. This allowed the disciples to remember past meetings with Jesus, to see their past with new eyes. But at the same time the disciples were able to understand the way in which this new life should be lived: sharing the food, the same table, being ourselves.

By this encounter with Jesus the disciples predicted that the future life, in this world and in the everlasting world, will be a life of communion. Individualistic or self-sufficient lives won’t allow us to accept our past or to have hope in a future. When we are self-sufficient we can’t accept that we deeply need others, which is our reality. We think that needing others won’t give us any satisfaction. It’s too good to be true that being inter-connected or needed, that living in communion, that sharing the food and all that we actually are with others and with the living God changes our lives. However, Jesus’ new risen life is absolutely true. We can’t prove it by a chemical experiment, but we have witnesses that show us this alternate reality. Especially the peacemakers, despite the current conflicts and wars of these days; the ones who serve the poor and who look for justice, despite this unfair globalization we have created; the ones who forgive others although they don’t deserve it.

It’s too good to be true that Jesus suffered death to rise from the dead and that he is currently alive, among us. It’s too good to be true that this new presence is so real that we can sit at the same table with him and with all the ones who believe in him, and that by doing so, we can receive his risen life to tell all nations that a life of communion, peace and forgiveness is possible.

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