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Homily

SECOND SUNDAY IN OT-B

The two disciples in the Gospel - Andrew and, perhaps, John himself - immediately follow Jesus when he is pointed out by the John the Baptist.

Like Samuel in the first reading, they are eager to respond,

Jesus asks the disciples "What are you looking for?"

It is a piercing question that lies at the heart of the Gospel.

The disciples' answer is a somewhat superficial:  "Where are you staying?"

One could say that, like Samuel, their hearts were burning but they weren't quite sure why.

Following Eli's advice, Samuel finally responds to the Lord:  "Speak, for your servant is listening."

And so, he enters into a relationship with God that nurtures his prophetic vocation.

The two disciples are doing the same by staying with Jesus the rest of the day.

However, when Jesus says, "Come and see," he is inviting them to more than just a passing visit; it is in fact a "homecoming."

The weeks and years ahead of them will require humility and openness to the new life to which they have been called.

And when Simon meets Jesus he gets a new name to highlight the different road he is about to travel.

All of this can be applied to our life of faith as well.

You and I have followed Jesus who asks us each day:  "What are you looking for?"

And each day we are challenged to "stay with" Jesus in order to deepen our relationship with him.

We do this through prayer, reading the Scriptures, and celebrating the Sacraments.

During this "Ordinary Time" we travel as companions with Jesus as he teaches, heals, and makes his ultimate journey to Jerusalem.

And you and I will also need humility and openness about the new life we are called to each day.

How do we translate what we have learned by "staying with Jesus" into acts of kindness, mercy, and compassion?

And, of course, we do not make this journey alone.

We have one another as fellow travelers, disciples on the way.

As Eli helped Samuel to recognize the voice of God, and Andrew brought Simon to Jesus, you and I can share what we have experienced with those we encounter.

By our words and, especially, by our example, we can bring others to Jesus.

This is a very important aspect of the vocation of parents and grandparents.

But it is also true in friendship, as well as in our general interactions with others.

St. Paul reminds us that we are members of Christ and that we have become one Spirit with him.

And if each of us is united with Christ then, through Christ, we are all united with one another.

That is why it is so important that we give good example.

Do I point to Christ by the manner of my life?

As St. Paul writes, we are not our own, we have been purchased at a price.

And that "price" is the blood of Jesus offered for us on the Cross.

We should ask ourselves:  If Jesus has invested himself entirely in his relationship with me, have I invested myself entirely in my relationship with him?

By our daily "staying with him" our love for him becomes deeper.

"What are you looking for?"

I suggest that our answer is:  To know that we are loved, and to return that love faithfully each day.

It is for this that God has created us; it is this longing that God has placed deep within us.

Let us respond:  "Speak Lord, for your servant is listening."

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