Basic Information

Mass Location: St. Mary Magdalen Chapel, 2532 Ventura Blvd., Camarillo, CA 93010
Mass Time: Sunday 10 a.m. (check parish website bulletin for special feastdays which may be different)
Confessions: 9:00-9:45 a.m. - see schedule below

Monday, October 27, 2014

Homily - Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost - October 19, 2014

Eph. 4:23-28; Mt. 22:1-14

You have heard me say that the Luke remembers Jesus who had an eye for the poor and lowly, those who know their need for God.  All we have to do is to look at the opening pages of his Gospel.  We see the Blessed Mother at the Annunciation, humble, and the presence of our Lord becomes real in her in His Incarnation.  Luke is the one who remembers the shepherds at our Lord’s birth, the first to hear the glad tidings of the savior.

Today, we have the Gospel of Matthew.  Matthew is writing to the Jewish Christians, the Church, the new Israel, and so we see the life of the Church in the episodes of his gospel, such as we do today.  The King is God the Father.  He decides to give a wedding for His Son.  This is the redemption by our Lord.  Of those who were invited, the people of the religion of Israel, not all accepted, and some of the leaders killed the messengers.  The city is destroyed.  This refers to the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans in 72.  The import is that the Old Testament temple has been destroyed, and to this day, no sacrifice has been offered in the religion of Israel.  The old covenant has given way to the new covenant, of the sacrifice of our Lord, which we offer at this and every Mass.  Then the King orders that the invitation to be given to all and the banquet is filled.  But then he sees someone who is not properly dressed for a wedding and casts him out, and the moral is, “many are called, few are chosen.”  Even though we are called, we must be prepared.

What is this garment which qualifies us for entry into the banquet?  There is an obvious link between with the Epistle in the garment which is put on.  This is language from the baptismal rite, as St. Paul is addressing the newly baptized at Ephesus.  After having been baptized, the neophyte puts on a new white garment, an outward sign of the inner transformation which has taken place by faith and baptism.  St. Paul says, “Put on the new man.”  Christ is the New Adam, and so we, baptized in Him, are new persons, and so we live a certain way.

There are many moral imperatives in the Epistles of St. Paul, and we would expect that we would do them because they are the right and good thing.  However, here, St. Paul gives us the virtue to be expressed, but also the interior motivation because of our conversion.  He says do not lie, because we are members of one another and meet each other with respect and charity.  He says if you are angry, do not sin.  Sometimes we feel upset, but we are reserved, because anger can cause division and gives Satan a chance to work.  He says do not steal, but be about honest work, so that we may give something to those in need.  Our inner conversion gives outward expression to the virtues which are like a garment adorning the person of faith.

And so the garment of the Gospel is the baptismal garment.  This is our entry into the life of God, the life of the Church, and, well lived, lets us be not only called but chosen, with a place in the Kingdom of God.