Monday, August 13, 2012

Paying the Taxes of this World that we Might Belong to the Kingdom of our Father

Listen to my homily for today:

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Mass Readings for the day

What a novel question Jesus asks Peter about taxes.  He asks it in such a way that we reply that we do not belong to this world.  We belong to the Kingdom of our Father.  It is to him that every human heart aches to belong.  We try to feel that we belong to God but because part of us still may belong to this world, which is still under the power of sin, we feel taxed and tried.  We suffer that we belong totally and radically to God.

Jesus payed the ultimate tax of his sufferings and death to not only pay for us but show us how to pay our dues.  We all must suffer to enter the kingdom of God.  We must be taxed so that those parts of us that don't yet belong to God may be subjected to the power of Christ.

The Most Holy Eucharist is the place where we join our payment, our sufferings to the sufferings of Christ.  From this perspective, it is interesting that a host looks like a coin of payment.  When the faithful participate devoutly in offering the sacrifice of the Mass, they offer to the Father the greatest possible treasure as payment for their own redemption, Jesus' own taxation for our sins.

Our Lady helps us in the awkward process of surrendering our hearts fully to God.  She was taxed with Jesus under the heavy weight of his sufferings.  She knows what we suffer and can help us offer it well in union with the holy sacrifice of the Mass.

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