Twenty-Eighth Sunday of the Year Homily

Posted on Oct 16, 2017



15 October 2017


My father drove semi-truck for almost all of his working life after WWII.

He worked long hours.

Because he worked and was gone all week, and because he sat so much in the truck,

My father liked to get out in the woods and work on weekends, Saturdays mostly.

He also thought it was the perfect bonding time to be with his sons.

Saturday morning he=d yell up the stairs: “Day light in the swamp.@

If it were winter we’d be cutting cedar posts in the swamp.

If it were spring or early summer, we=d be peeling popple.

Truly two of the most miserable jobs on the face of the earth.

I spent my adolescent years begin angry about my father’s Saturday chores.

First, he was taking my Saturday, it was my Saturday.

I wanted to sleep in like all the rest of the world did on Saturday morning.


I wanted to do almost anything but go work with him in the woods.


Like an true-blooded adolescent, I would be sullen to show my displeasure.

Second, and this is the part that really ticked me off,

when I showed up for breakfast on Saturday mornings at 5 am,

I was not allowed to be sullen or crabby. It was simply not allowed.

I was expected to act like a decent human being.

This is what bothered me the most though.

It wasn=t just that I had to show up and go to work with him.

I had to be pleasant.  AYes, Lord,@ wasn=t enough.

And that is the problem in today=s gospel.

First of all there is the group that didn’t even show up.

They’ll not come to a good end.  They’re in trouble.

But second of all, it=s not enough just to show up.

You=ve got to show up with a smile on your face.

AYes, Lord@ isn=t enough.

And that=s what galls us.  More is expected than the bare minimum.

You can=t, for example show up here and sit like a lump.

You=ve got to put your heart and body and lips and voice into it.

You can=t simply avoid evil, the generic good person,

you have to do goodBwith a smile on your face.

So this week, what will you do, putting your heart and soul into, and not just “showing up?”