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WOF Radio > Sermons > Sermon Archive for 2012 > Sermon 612 : Would that Everyone Could be a Prophet : 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time
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    Sermon 612 : Would that Everyone Could be a Prophet : 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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     Our first reading from the Book of Numbers and the Gospel reading from Mark both highlight a very interesting spiritual predicament, one that is presented numerous times throughout the Bible. It might be summed up as the inclination for members of the Church to subvert the mission of the Church because of their own ego driven desires and pre-occupations.
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Can we apply this week's message to our Protestant,Evangelical brothers who preaches the Word of God in their churches. Should we have the same attititude of Christ: Let them be cause they are doing good works as well for the sake of the kingdom?
9/28/2012 12:01:46 PM
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Matteo Masiello
Fr. Brown, I love your podcast since I discovered it after coming across a video of you talking about John Dominic Crossan. What struck me about the scripture you drew from about the attitude of who's in and who's out can be applied to not just within the Roman Catholic Church, but within all the traditions of Christians - from Roman Catholics, Orthodox and Anglican, to Protestant (mainline or otherwise) to Mormons. It seems that everyone points out why and how other Christians are not really Christians or are not "good enough" Christians, Catholics, Methodists, Baptists, etc. Everyone thinks they are right and everyone else is wrong and claim the Bible and "tradition" as their own authority. Should I even start with other faith traditions concerning who has the "right" portrayal of God? I wish there would be more ecumenicalism and interfaith respect than there currently is in the world. Why do people maintain the attitude that everyone else has to be wrong for them to be right? This is what really depresses me as someone coming back to the Roman Catholic Church after being away for years. Why do we allow the fundamentalists (take your pick of Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Muslims and Hindus) be the only voices in the conversation. It seems that one aspect of Christian apologetics involves the Law of Non-Contradiction, which I am sure you know about. However, it seems that one "thing" goes against this law...namely, God. Why do we all think that God is exclusively ours? Why do we think we are the only prophets>
9/28/2012 12:38:21 PM
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Whose doing such a thing? have to define "members of the church".
9/28/2012 12:52:26 PM
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Fr. Barron, what an incredible amount of courage you have! There always seems to be someone in the Churches' corners, whispering rumors, with malicious intent on division, and perpetuated by pride: pride in thinking they "know" something going on within the hallowed halls; why one priest was assigned to this church, another to that one; why one priest will never become a bishop, while another has found political favor. It is still "who you know", and name dropping drums out in deceitful rhythms. You have really put upfront and on the table your thoughts on this; making the "who you know" to be God, to be Jesus, to be The Holy Spirit. You are about to become the 10th Rector of The University of St. Mary of the Lake, and how fortunate that staff and peoples are to have someone who can make the focus Jesus. All Congradulations and God Speed!
9/28/2012 1:18:22 PM
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God bless you Father Barron. God has surely poured out upon you an abundance of His Spirit. May you always speak with such courage and conviction so that God's people hear His voice and move in unity to fulfill His mission.
9/28/2012 1:47:04 PM
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Rev. Sal Rosa
This text against small-minded pettiness and jealousy also needs to be balanced by another of Our Lord's statements in Matthew 12:30, "He who is not with me is against me." Many justify their departure from the Church by finding an "easier" Gospel to guide them, and come out with the trite cliche "that all religions are the same". Certainly the in-house rivalries cripple us, but a false ecumenism does also. I would love to hear a balanced presentation that presented the Matthew 12:30 side of the coin. It would clean up a lot of fuzzy thinking.
9/28/2012 4:57:49 PM
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vito benigno
Peace be with you Father Barron!Thank you Father for your honesty as to the divisiveness that sometimes happens in the Church.When i was asked to be a part of the pastoral council years ago,i had no idea this does happen.At one of the meetings the council was very critical that one of the elder Priest spent to much time on his homily.i responded, lets remember this is a man that gave his entire life serving God and humanity.The armenian,greek and are protestant brother and sister often spend in excess of two hours in worship on sunday.The council did not appreciate my response but i didnt care.i knew immediately that this was not for me.Now more than ever we as Catholics should be of one heart and one mind.MI IMMACULATA
9/28/2012 9:49:56 PM
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Mama Perez
Father Barron, I appreciate this message in so many ways. I feel strongly the words you spoke on this issue is at the core of why people are leaving the Catholic church. I know to say these issues are only in the Catholic church would be false but I have spent time as a teacher in public school and Catholic school, I have taught CCD, been a Eucharistic minister; all things that we are fortunately for in our Catholic church. I do not have a desire to leave the church myself, but it has been a question for years on my mind and a prayer to God. God keeps 'telling' me CHANGE FROM WITHIN. As a Catholic teacher, I saw often others (myself at times) judging students, not disciplining. Talking behind students and parents backs of how they should do things and comparing them to students that may have advantages such as IQ or family upbringing. We read in scripture so often how none of us are perfect and we know we are not, but many spend their times in the church 'telling' others they do not belong. By a dirty look when a child misbehaves in mass to clicky-parent groups at the Catholic schools and within the faculty. Those are items best left for the secular world, not us. I see rarely personal responsibility imposed by self, instead of through church rules or laws. Jesus did not come and impose law, he followed it. He was the role-modle and He showed every person...every person, genuine love. That was how the church was created. I have been taking my family to a non-denominational church daily before mass every Sunday because I feel it gives me Jesus in a way the Catholic church here is not giving at this current time. I have freinds at other churches that say the same that people listen to the Bible and the pastor but do what they want to do outside and then complain about what everyone else is doing wrong. This is a temptation for us all, but it is only in keeping our eyes fixated on Christ, that we will combat that urge. The people suffering because of our 'busyness' or judgmentalness the most are the teens at this current time. I taught middle school CCD and have a teen and the activities at the Catholic church are nothing like the activities at the other church we are visiting with. They do much more missions, volunteering, and youth activities that involve real-life situations here in America in the year 2012. We have more resources these days to do this, but we do not do it because "protestants do that". The minute we turn our noses down to another, we are not acting like Jesus and we will not benefit by learning new ways to reach the youth today. I have met several parents at a loss with their teens attitude but they give up and say that is the way they are today. Walk in a church where God is alive in the members and I guarantee you will see teens who do not follow the crowd. These teens will be who runs this country someday and we need to reach them now either in the Catholic church or another but either way, it is only Jesus that will make the difference. Jesus is in the places we may not think of, just as much the places we do. I would like to see the Catholic church here in America get to the heart of what LOVE looks like to all the people in every congregation without judgment on gender, race, education, age, social status...WWJD?
9/29/2012 8:43:32 AM
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To: Rev. Sal Rosa
Hi Rev. Rosa,

This homily describes one of the most distressing things to me about the church...

... and yet (most affectionately in Christian love) you made me laugh.

Thanks for being you.
9/29/2012 9:01:52 AM
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I am a person who loves Catholicism! It is the Eucharist which excites me. We have a Beautiful Gift which we must be in awe of, given to us daily.However, Father Barron, a question. Please explain the Annunciation. While I believe this, it is difficult to think about. And in no way understandable. Thank you and may God bless you daily.
9/29/2012 4:08:23 PM
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Thank you....your acknowledgement of the power games people play, and the possibilities suggested for the adoption of "new approaches" to do God's will, was like cool water over a painful wound.
9/29/2012 9:33:37 PM
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Nancy Harmon
Remembering the full context of the Word is very important. Added to the balance of these passages is the gospel about the wheat and the weeds. Jesus is very firm about judge not! Focus on differences undermines the strength of our unity. We don't have to worry about whether other Christians are doing it just the right way. We are to be about God's work and in the end He, He will separate the wheat from the weeds. Until that day our command is to love, to forgive, and to be at peace.
9/30/2012 7:32:25 AM
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Fr. Barron, thanks again for another insightful homily! On Friday, I had listened to your sermon then watch the movie Avengers for the first time. A big smile came this weekend as I watched. In a way the movie is a metaphorical story - analogy for the Church's spiritual battle in this world. A group of very human super heros ultimately defeating evil.
9/30/2012 9:09:09 AM
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Fr. Barron: Thanks again for the wonderful homily. After listening to your sermon and then watching the Avengers on Friday a connection was made. In a metaphorical sense, the Avengers like the hierarchy of the church are very human, yet prevail in the "great struggle."
9/30/2012 9:20:11 AM
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Oh Father Barron,
Your Hilarious, I have pictured the scene with the words these clowns & can't stop laughing. Thank u for your Yes to Christ, Ah if but everyone could say yes to Jesus & do the mission. My mission is to surrender my will to the will of my Lord for the salvation of souls.
9/30/2012 10:37:10 AM
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Franklin P. Uroda
As usual, good job explaining the essentials. As usual, the contents of the readings are so encompassing, that as I listened to your discussion, it triggered other ideas about the present day apostles around the world.
9/30/2012 11:24:23 AM
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Saba Koriale
YES Father, THANK you! But the Catholic church is huge, really huge,- and a family which has 10 children faces more problems than another with a few children only- However, among twelve disciples (first Church), one of them was envious; and when I meet envious among our churchs' communities that does NOT DICOURAGE me at all; If the first scandal happened among twelve, it is happening now as well among more than one billion Catholics; Namely I am NOT chocked at all. since I reconverted in 2000, I believe STRONGLY that Catholic church is one, holy, apostolic and universal. Therefor has many enemies inside and outside-I understand why other denominations don't like us; Yes, it happened among the twelve first, but He cured them!! :
9/30/2012 11:46:01 AM
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Matteo Masiello
Saba, why presume only one was envious? They all argued among themselves about who was the most favored. They ALL betrayed him in the end, so I don't think Judas should take all the blame, or that even Judas is beyond forgiveness. Today's reading from Numbers 11:25-29 - Yes, Moses, would that ALL the Lord's people were prophets, and that the Lord would put His spirit on them! I don't think "the Lord's people" are ONLY Roman Catholics.
9/30/2012 12:33:25 PM
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Mike T
Hello all. In the Homily today at my local parish in MN I thought our priest did an excellent job of dissecting and explaining these readings. But I took it more as an explanation of our relationship with our protestant brothers and sisters. We shouldn't worry so much about how they feel about us, nor should we judge them for being different than us. Instead we should continue to focus on the mission of our one holy, Catholic and apostolic Church. That is to spread the gospel to all the nations in the name of the Father the Son and the Holy Spirit. An important part of this mission is living a life of love and joy in Christ. IN this way we offer a faith of acceptance and unity for all to see.

9/30/2012 8:20:25 PM
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Again, there is reason for doubt. Sometimes i'm just not sure what to believe. Where is the integrity, how can there be trust.

Oh yes, i'm looking for that place that doesn't exist this side of Heaven again.

There is cause for doubt.

It is that perpetual struggle to stay.
9/30/2012 10:08:04 PM
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I heard a nun once say 'A priest is like a waiter, he serves the dish, he does not cook it, the Magisterium does.'

As prophets & with the 'Year of Faith' coming up, we should check on our source of wisdom.

Fr Steve Grunow - 'The Gospel is not dependent on the personality of a priest or teacher to be what it is, and one can distinguish a true minister of the Gospel from a charlatan by paying careful attention to whether or not he represents himself and his ideas or the Lord and the Apostolic Faith.'
9/30/2012 11:05:46 PM
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If I may make a suggestion to u & to all; everything comes from Love. Many years ago I came across a book by Saint Alphonsus Liguori, The Practice of the Love of Jesus Christ, & now I have read all his work many times. I don't know if I found him or he found me, but he became my Spiritual Director & my Best Friend. Please consider giving him a chance to help u, he wrote many books. He is very Powerful with God. Also, in my crowd of friends is St. Benedict = Extremely Powerful against satin, & St. Teresa of Avila= Extremely Powerful when u need protection from the devil. But the Most Powerful & my Protection against the evil one is Our Lady of Guadalupe. One day I was reading The Glories of Mary by St. Alphonsus Liguori & on one particular paragraph about Mary I saw the devil spit out of his mouth in total disgust & anger, but powerless. At this moment I knew the Most Powerful Weapon against satin is Our Lady. Surround yourself in her most Precious Love & all of your concerns will be taken care of. I am a prayer warrior, know of my prayers for u.
10/1/2012 10:11:24 AM
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Rev. Sal Rosa, I think your comment is spot on. Between Matthew 12:30 and Mark 9:40 we have two seemingly contradictory statements of Our Lord. Since Our Lord cant contradict himself, we need to clarity on these statements.

Truth must count for something, otherwise why did many men and women suffer martyrdom for it?
10/1/2012 6:02:12 PM
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Matteo Masiello, who are you really arguing against here. I suspect you think that charity and truth are in conflict. They aren't.
10/1/2012 6:07:09 PM
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I absolutely see the point that's being made and can agree with it as long as we entertain the other side. That is, Is it also possible that the young men who wanted to stop Eldad and Medad were concerned that they E & M wouldn't deliver the right message? I'm serious...I just had a priest in Sunday service suggest to the congregation that the host is a symbol of Christ's body, not the actual transformation of it. That's Protestantism, and is categorically not Catholicism. Someone has to make sure what's being preached is official doctrine, right? In our system it's the Pope.
10/1/2012 6:46:35 PM
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Matteo Masiello
Ray, forgive me but I don't understand your comment.
10/1/2012 9:07:41 PM
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Should we look at 'Mt 12:30' & 'Mk 9:40' in the light of 'John 15:5'?

John 15:5 - I am the vine and you are the branches. As long as you remain in me(truth) and I(truth) in you, you bear much fruit; but apart from me(truth) you can do nothing(scatter,nothing useful).

Mt 12:30 - The one who is not with me(truth) is against me, and the one who does not gather with me scatters.

Mk 9:40 - For whoever is not against us(truth) is for us.

If we are not with the truth we scatter. With the truth we do the Lord's work.
10/2/2012 1:52:11 AM
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Matteo, I'm sorry for being so unclear. I was trying to react to your comment "I don't think "the Lord's people" are ONLY Roman Catholics..". I'm not sure what you based that statement on or who claimed that only Catholics are the "Lord's People".

There is truth and there is error. Once we accept that we must also accept that there will be some separation between holders of different truth positions. That separation does not necessarily mean war. In fact there can be charity even in that state of separation. And one of the things that charity will call for is dialogue and "Reconciliation in Truth" between the separate parties.
10/2/2012 8:45:50 AM
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TO: Rev. Rosa
Rev. Rosa, what would cause you not to share your knowledge? You've signed your title as Reverend, was your comment posted in love?

I mean in all due respect for your priestly position, if i understand, (and forgive me if i don't) then i think this is a perfect example (perhaps subtly) of the homily itself.
10/2/2012 9:27:59 AM
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Thanks Ray. Sorry I didn't understand you. I was reacting to Saba's comment about there being "enemies" in and out of the church (presumably the Roman Catholic Church?) I don't accept the exclusivity of one "church" as opposed to the church as the body of Christ, which is made up of different types of people with different truth claims. The Cosmic Christ if you will through whom we have our very being. I read this passage in Numbers in a more universal sense as I read the other verses in which the disciples are bickering with one another. I accept truth as it exists in all traditions as the Roman Catholic Church does. I don't read the passage in terms of it exclusive reference to views within Roman Catholicism.
10/2/2012 11:15:45 AM
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I believe the things Father Barron discusses arise when we identify with ego. When we are able to see clearly, we are not identified with ego but rather truth.
10/2/2012 10:15:17 PM
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