Thirtieth Sunday of the Year Homily

Posted on Oct 30, 2018



28 October 2018


During my first week as a priest I was sitting in the front office of St. Pat’s watching the people go by.

I had spent all this time preparing to be a priest

but when I finally go to be one I didn’t know exactly what I was supposed to do every day.

I watched a lady come up to the front door of the rectory, hesitate, and then around and walk away.

Frankly I was relieved she walked away.

I went across the hall to the secretary’s office and told her what I had just seen.

I was speaking and the doorbell rang.

It was the lady who I had watched come to the door and turn around.

I opened the door.  Could she see a priest?

Honest to God, my first instinct was to get the pastor.

Finally, I said, “Would I do?”

She looked at me up and down and then said, “I suppose.”

I ushered her into the office, closed the door, sat down and said: “Nice day for a walk, huh?”

She looked at me and said: “Let’s get to the point Father.”

I need $25, are you going to give it to me or not?”

“Why do you need it?” I asked

“Do you want a story, or do you want the truth?” she said.

“I’d prefer the truth.”

“That,” she said, “is none of your business.”

I thought to myself–this isn’t going right and so I said to her–

“I don’t know a lot about this kind of stuff, but there seems to be something strange about this.  Are you sure all you want is $25?”

“No, that’s not all I want,” she snapped back.  “I want a cure for cancer, an end to the nuclear arms race, I want my sister in Wausau to get rid of the no-good man she is living with–and I want a poodle.  But if you’re asking today, what do I want now?  I’m willing to settle for $25.”

We all want a lot of things in the by and by.  Probably all of the things on that lady’s list.  But we’re willing to settle for a lot less.

Bartimaeus was a professional huckster–a professional beggar, who both believed he had no other choices and was willing to settle for what he got each day in begging.

But one day he asked for something more, asked for something which would change his life.

And he got it.

That’s a miracle–or what we call a miracle.

It never would have happened if Bartimaeus hadn’t asked for it–

Hadn’t been willing that day not to settle for whatever he could shake from the passers-by–

but ask for the impossible.

I’m still too timid myself to ask for a lot of miracles, what about you?