Harbored a grudge

Greetings on this the Memorial of the Passion of Saint John the Baptist
Readings: 1 Cor 2:1-5; Ps 119:97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102; Mk 6:17-29
Notes: Humility has been the topic since Saturday. Yesterday I contrasted for you the difference between humility and humiliation.

Added these thoughts in the homily:

  1. Jesusology, the way Jesus lived among us, shows his great humility.
  2. Christology, Jesus’ mission, shows us the divine humility, love and mercy.
  3. Monica, knowing her work was not complete, humbly and often prayed for her family and son especially.
  4. Augustine, prideful young man, prayed and searched his way into humility.
  5. John shows us the sacrifice of the best man for his best friend.
  6. Humiliation is either real or forced upon us.
    6a. Real, if it is a result of our trying to take Advantage, Alliance or Acquisition (i.e., to steal).
    6b. False, if it is based on anything else (criticism of height, race are examples of false humiliation).
  7. Jesus’ example of someone taking the higher seat at a wedding is an obvious example of someone wanting alliance, advantage or acquisition. Ditto a banquet of influencers and dealmakers.
  8. But you. You be humble.
  • Monica,
  • Augustine,
  • Jesus,
  • and now, John the Baptist.

Saint Paul’s writings confirm the need to humbly offer Jesus in spirit and power of the Lord not in any human authority.

In today’s gospel portion we read the event and causes of John’s beheading:

Humiliation of Herodias. Not a false humiliation but a real, factual, intentional reality.

  • Herod was the one who had John the Baptist arrested and bound in prison on account of Herodias.
  • It was not enough for her, how deep the humiliation, “I want you to give me at once on a platter the head of John the Baptist.”

First reading
I came to you in weakness and fear and much trembling, and my message and my proclamation were not with persuasive words of wisdom, but with a demonstration of spirit and power, so that your faith might rest not on human wisdom but on the power of God.

For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

Responsorial Psalm
Lord, I love your commands.

Alleluia Verse
Blessed are those who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.

Gospel Portion
In today’s gospel portion we have the contrast of humility and humiliation.

  • Humiliation of Herodias.
  • Humility of John the Baptist.

He must increase; I must decrease (Jn 3:30).

How people understood Jesus was in direct proportion to the humility of John the Baptist.
In the Marcan gospel sequence the beheading of John is the opening up of:

  • the mission of the twelve.
  • the feeding of the 5,000.
  • the walking on water.

Choose humility.

Peace be with you,
Deacon Gerry

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