Jesus said to his old neighbors, “Amen, I say to you, no prophet is accepted in his own native place.” No man or woman will be widely accepted by her old neighbors mainly because they watched this once young man or woman with all their youthful indiscretions, mistaken ideas, foolish actions and outright mistakes. Once the elders watched and at times got a good laugh from the kid. Or, they simply heard the rumors or accusations and shook their head in disbelief. Then one day, sometime down the road of life, the elders hear this same young man or woman has chosen to enter a seminary or convent and they, with a great spirit of humor, place with one another a gentleman’s bet betting just HOW LONG this “so-called vocation” might last. Again, the elders smile.
Like Christ, many religious vocations really do not start till the young adult is maybe out of college, been working a good number of years, or even later in life. It happens! More and more these days, we are receiving vocations to priesthood from men who have had much career experience and of course they have had a good time in the School of Hard Knocks which life grants unto every person.
Christ reminds us that in the eyes of God, the beauty, the basic dignity, and the sacred nature of every young person, every middle-aged person and every older adult rests right within one’s self. That unearned undeserved dignity, given unto each person is pure gift! Your vocation in the modern Church, is through your Baptism and Confirmation. Now, our Lord invites YOU to go out into our modern world and teach by being present and recognizing the innate dignity all peoples possess. We are to do so in a humble manner.
It has been said, sometimes you must leave home in order to come home. Not sure if that is the right quote, but its close. Coming home is God’s invitation to come closer to Him, to draw nearer, and to walk humbly in the company of Christ. May peace bless you. May our good Lord bless you. And may you always freely choose to walk humbly in the company of Christ. AMEN.
-Father Michael Briese