The Church of Saint Agnes

1680 Dixie Highway, Fort Wright, KY 41011

The Church of Saint Agnes
1680 Dixie Highway, Fort Wright, KY 41011

Saint Agnes School | Contact Us

Memorial of Saint Dominic

Date: 
Tue, 08/08/2017
Author: 
Rev. Msgr. Donald Enzweiler

The waves and wind-tossed sea represent a hostile world.
The boat is a symbol for the Church.
Safety is found in the boat.
But Jesus travels in the hostility of the world.
It takes great faith to get out of the boat and join him.
Before we can believe Jesus can save the world, we have to believe Jesus can save us.
 
From the beginning, Jesus is preparing his disciples for mission.
Unknown to them, he will not always be with them.
He will return to the Father.  They will be commanded to continue his work.
His work isn’t overcoming the threats of nature.
His work is healing.
His work is bringing God’s love to those who have no idea such love exists.
His work is bringing divine salvation of the world.
 
What is not directly said in today’s Gospel is that the boat is headed to Gentile territory.
God forbid any Jew should be touched by someone who was unclean.
Yet Jesus allowed the unclean
to touch the tassel of his prayer shawl, the very thing that connected a Jew with God.
 
As disciples, Jesus would have us go where no one wants to go.
Jesus would have us do what no one wants to do.
And yet we cling to the safety of the boat.
And as long as we do, the world continues unchanged.
Or worse, it continues to morally and spiritually disintegrate
because those of good will, those grounded in truth, those who know and accept God’s love…
remain silent.
The benefit of remaining in the boat outweighs the consequences of getting out.
The risk of speaking up is too great.
The risk of acting uprightly, or standing up for what is truly just, unsettles our inner status quo.
Our reputation is at stake.
We don’t want to become the focus of attention or be attacked by criticism.
We don’t want others to think us fanatics, or call us hypocrites because our lives are not perfect
because we have skeletons in our closet and someone just might open that door.
We don’t want to be scrutinized by the public’s eye.
We don’t like being vulnerable, having our weaknesses come to light.
We don’t like the possibility of losing ourselves, sacrificing ourselves.
 
The bottom line here?  Faith is a risk.  Discipleship is a risky business.
A faith that knows no risk is a faith that does not grow or evolve.
To step out of the boat is to step up to another level of our experience of God, so to speak.
To step out of the boat is to venture into new territory.
There we discover strengths we never knew we had.
We discover things that are new to us….possibilities we never knew existed.
 
There was once a man who got into a boat.
We are here because this man was willing to get out of the boat.
His name was Christopher Columbus.  His name was also Peter.
 
Today’s prayer:  “O Lord, save us as we encounter the hostility of an unbelieving world.  May our faith in Your Son Jesus Christ prompt us and impel us to get out of the boat so as to join him in the mission of saving the world from sin.  Amen!”