As we come towards the end of the Church’s year, the readings present a timely theme of endurance with hope for the future. The future earth has forgotten God. Science and technology reign supreme and the benevolent governments banishes hunger, poverty and diseases and provides a luxurious lifestyle for some. We can all agree that we live between the tension of the contemporary and future. The timely theme of today’s readings is relevant not only from the perspective of God’s future but also a new human future. Moreover, this is not only the tension but indeed a profound concern in a world where we face daily events and happenings that threaten our very survival and existence. For instance, scrutinizing the signs of our times we notice pressing issues like terminal illnesses, poverty, gender, ecology, social injustices, corruption and insecurity in different ways. Don Wilton writing to those who may need hope and encouragement, in his book A Hope and A Future, he writes: “Jesus Christ came into my life and everything changed.” In this book he introduces his readers to the power of God’s Word, he helps them apply it in their everyday living to fill their lives with meaning and purpose instead of earthly discouragements.
Preachers/homilists experience difficulties in their effort to instill a culture of optimism about faith and human progress especially against the postmodern “culture of ambiguity.” Personally, I have made every effort within my intellectual, social and spiritual disposition to infuse a language of hope with a new vitality. Often, I have examined carefully the relationship between post modern world thought, my Christian tradition and biblical hope to articulate faith in a new way that is hope-filled. Subtly, in today’s Gospel Luke presents such a hope-filled message that God is faithful and always working for our good. In fact, he is with us even if we have to suffer. To point more clearly, it is difficult to talk of our future because it exceeds our own categories and for this reason, Jesus uses images and words taken from the Old Testament to explain the future of his disciples throughout the generations. Probably, this is the most difficult Gospel and the difficulty stems from its language and content. But notwithstanding this difficulty, Jesus promises to give wisdom to his disciples to use for their defense. By this promise, certainly, Jesus reveals himself as the link between the present and the future. In his person our future is laid open and he is the True source of our firmness and endurance; our Way, Life and the Truth. In him our life has permanent foundation. He is the Sun of justice and our model to imitate because with his entry in our human history he opened our future and he has continued to inspire us to open that future for others. An example is Fr. Francis Gaciata and Fr Francis Liwa who continue to imitate Christ by giving hope to the poor and orphans in Meru diocese, Kenya. Various prison and hospital chaplains visiting and giving hope to the prisoners and the sick in the hospitals, those helping the elderly people to age gracefully and the deacons and priests in their ministry striving to preach the message of hope to the people. Evidently, in Jesus there is the entire sense of the universe.
Joy and Peace