Saturday, March 1, 2014

Like a Little Child

A Homily by Deacon Timothy Donohue
in Saint Mary and Saint Nicholas Cathedral 
in Galway

Jesus loved children.  Jesus doesn’t act angry very often in the Gospels — but this is one of those times and Jesus uses this moment to teach us what we need to do.

Jesus tells us to “accept the kingdom of God like a child.,” or you will not enter it.”

What does that mean?  What is Jesus’ message?  Jesus is calling us to have faith in him…the faith of a child.

But children’s lives are different than ours…Children’s lives are simpler, less complicated.

Children come to relationships without agenda, they have trust in their parents, they feel safe in their homes and instinctively know their parents love for them.  Children don't worry about work, credit card bills, or mortgage payments.  Children don't buy groceries.  Children exude joy…you can see it in their eyes.

Adults have more complicated lives.  We have doubts or second thoughts often, distractions, temptations, and other priorities than our faith sometimes.

As Saint Ignatius says in his Spiritual Exercises: we often have “disordered ambitions.”

How can we overcome these challenges to find the faith that Jesus is calling us to?

Saint James tells us today to pray, sing a song of praise, and pray for one another.  In prayer we gain a deeper relationship with Jesus and he will help us grow our faith.

Today, as we pray together as pilgrims in Ireland, we are now witnesses to great faith.,

We can see the  faith of Saint Patrick that brought an enduring faith to this island.  We saw the evidence of the faith of Saint Cieran and his monks at Clonmacnoise that built his monastery on the River Shannon.  We saw the faith of the people in Ballintubber who built a Church, rebuilt a church, and waited years to rebuild and reroof this Abbey again.

The faith of the witnesses to the apparition of Knock that has taught us about “the Queen of Ireland.”

We see here the faith of the people of Galway who tore down a prison to build this Cathedral.

We are called today to find that faith in our own hearts.  Maybe we need to make time to simplify our lives, to stop spinning our wheels in the secular world long enough to pray.  As Saint James tells us: pray, sing a song of praise, pray for one another.

Jesus is waiting for us to make time for him.  He is always ready to help us.  We are witnesses to the great things he can do through people of faith.