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SS Peter and Paul Parish

36 N. Ellsworth, Naperville, IL 60540 | (630) 355-1081
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Homily – 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time – June 25, 2017; Father Thomas Milota

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I.                   Homily – 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time – June 25, 2017
II.               We often consider silence evil.
A.                 If we greet someone and they remain silent…not returning our greeting, we think them rude.
B.                 If we ask someone a question…and they given no reply, we presume them either rude or lacking knowledge.
C.                 Silence can even be deadly…
1.                  Saint Thomas More was killed not for speaking his mind…not for opposing King Henry the VIII…no…the truth is that Saint Thomas More did not oppose Henry VIII taking control of the Church of England and declaring his own marriage null in any way until after He was being hauled off to be executed.
2.                  Saint Thomas More even pointed out that the law determined that silence implied consent for what the King had done…and, yet, pilgrims still visit Thomas More’s tomb in tower chapel.  Saint Thomas More was killed not because he spoke…but because he did not speak.
D.                Yet, it was not only Thomas More who remained silent as he was accused of wrong-going is it?
1.                  Do you not remember our Lord standing before Pilate:
a)                 Saint John wrote:  “When Pilate heard this, he was even more afraid, 9 and he went back inside the palace. ‘Where do you come from?” he asked Jesus, but Jesus gave him no answer. 10 “Do you refuse to speak to me?’ Pilate said. ‘Don’t you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?'”
b)                 God remains silent.
E.                 We may wonder why God is silent…why he says nothing in the midst of so much injustice in our world.
1.                  Why is God silent in the face of poverty and war and strife?
2.                  Why is God silent in the face of attacks on marriage and life?
3.                  Why is God silent?
F.                  And, yet, perhaps the Almighty…all-knowing God knows something we do not.
1.                  Abraham Lincoln is thought to have said:  “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt.”
III.            Perhaps, the reality is that we talk too much.
A.                 Have we ever thought of fasting from fasting from Facebook?  I know people who have taken great benefit from fasting from Facebook…but I have never met anyone who has told me how wonderful fasting from fasting from Facebook is.
B.                 Recently, Cardinal Robert Sarah…Pope Francis’s man in charge of liturgy…wrote this:
1.            “At the heart of man there is an innate silence, for God abides in the innermost part of every person. God is silence, and this divine silence dwells in man. In God, we are inseparably bound up with silence. … God carries us, and we live with him at every moment by keeping silence. Nothing will make us discover God better than his silence inscribed in the center of our being. If we do not cultivate this silence how can we find God?”
2.            Indeed, silence does not mean being alone.  On the contrary, being with another requires, at least, moments of silence.  Indeed, the complement, “He is a good listener,” is an acknowledgment of the necessity of silence in any good relationship.
C.                 So, if we stretch this principle to the eternal-moment, Let’s ask ourselves this question:
1.                  What will you say to God when you finally meet him?
2.                  I would be willing to bet…a lot of money…that we will say nothing…, nothing when we stand face to face with the Almighty…there will be no Wisdom which we will be able to impart to him that he does not already possess.
3.                  On that day, there will be no question we can put forward which He has not already answered.
4.                  There will be nothing left to say.
5.                  We will be silent.
D.                Indeed, married couples have an experience of this don’t they?
1.                  Imagine for a moment a newly wedded couple…after the Mass…after the reception…after greeting hundreds of guests…after family and friends have gone home…
2.                  …after this incredibly long day…what would they prefer to do…would the newly married couple rather…go out on the town…or would they rather go up to their room…hold each other in their arms and not say a word?
IV.             Let me give you another example:  Have you ever noticed that saints crave silence.
A.                 Saint Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, the Pope’s order…the order that runs great universities all over the world…Saint Ignatius believed God’s will was revealed to us not in speaking…but in listening…not in noise but in silence.
B.                 This seems so contrary to the common wisdom in every respect…there are people in this world that make millions of dollars helping others craft communications to market products…and deal with problems of all sorts.   Imagine marketing a new product by saying nothing.
C.                 And, yet, here I am…no…here God is, telling us that the answer…the solution is found in not speaking…not in speaking but in listening…and when it comes not the most important questions…the questions of meaning and purpose and existence and joy and eternal life…the one who invented life is inviting us to listen…to be quiet with him.
V.                So…tonight…before you go to bed…do this…
A.                 Go to a place inside or outside the house where no one else is…sit down…and for the amount of time it takes to pray the “Our Father,” ask our Lord to bless the time you are going to spend with Him so that you may come to know Him more completely.
B.                 Then, …read the account of our Lord’s birth in the Gospel of Matthew…think about the shepherds on the hills listening to the angels sing…think about the baby in the manger…his mother’s face…the face of Joseph…and, then, …then, just listen…say nothing…just listen.  Don’t tell him your problems…don’t ask him for anything…just listen.
C.                 By this, we will allow our whispers to be God’s whispers.

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Fr. Thomas Milota, Pastor (630) 718-2108 (Jessica)