Homily 13th Sunday OT 30th June 2024

Homily 13th Sunday OT 30th June 2024

Today’s two Gospel stories, especially rich and touching, have in common attitudes to life and death. Both reveal the nature of a life beyond the mundane – a world of faith and salvation. All these – true life, faith and salvation – are supremely positive realities. Life is the most precious of all human values.

In the first reading from the book wisdom, the author also speaks of life and death. He interprets the beginning of the book of Genesis to arrive at the conclusion that God didn’t make death. God is the author of life, and he wants our lives to be imperishable, God created all things good, and made people in His own image and likeness; this means that we have been made for eternity.

Death is the work of the devil and people who choose his way. The author speaks not a physical death, but that of which physical death is a sign: a spiritual death, or the alienation from God caused by sin. True life is more than mere biological life, it is a fulness of existence which comes from intimacy with God.

St. Paul in the second reading emphasises the life of salvation surpasses a life of quiet desperation.

Life is precious. We may not understand why a twelve-year-old girl dies, or why a woman is afflicted for many years with an awkward disease. That is in God’s hands. Apart from miracles, God doesn’t make exceptions to the laws of gravity or inertia or the confluence of physical vector forces. These are the laws he has put into nature which enable the human mind to discern order in the universe and improve the world.

And we must have faith to see beyond our present problems, troubles, and suffering to allow the Lord to be master of our lives.

When life is in our hands, we should plead for it like Jairus, try to live it to the full like the woman with the haemorrhage and hang on to it like Paul. The woman cured of the haemorrhage would die, and the little girl whom Jesus brought back from death would die again. But because of Jesus’ action, their chances for eternal and unending life were hopefully enhanced. We should do our upmost to better life’s qualities for everyone, including the unborn, and to trust in the lord of life.

Fr Andrew