Thirteenth Sunday of the Year Homily

Posted on Jul 5, 2018



1 July 2018

On Memorial Day many years ago I spent a few hours at my parents’ home.

Part of that time I went on a long walk that took me out of the small town where I grew up.

It was a very quiet day in Hatley.

Eventually, I passed a seventeen year old who apparently had just gotten a new vehicle

–one of those little pick-ups.

He had the hood up and was just leaning on his elbows, looking at the engine.

I yelled out “Hi!” and asked him what he was doing.

“Nothing,” he said, “Just looking.”

It was a very quiet day in Hatley.

Next I came to a spot where the Plover River bends and comes close to the road.

This was the place in the river where when I was an adolescent and bound and

determined to shake my fear of water and be just like all of my friends

–I went swimming with them.

I can’t swim–my friends took off in a race and I fell into a hole that sucked me right down.

I remember thinking it would take a miracle to save me–I was sure I was going to die.

A miracle did happen.

One of my friends came back after me–couldn’t see me and began to dive.

I was grateful for that day–for the miracle that saved me from drowning–

and without getting superstitious I was grateful to God

–because my friend shouldn’t have come back for me.

Finally, I came to the place where I had my first automobile accident.

I was young and foolish and daring–and I had my father’s pick-up for the first time.

My friends had piled into the cab and the back, we were going to another friend’s home.

I took the corner where the river bends close to the road too rapidly–

The rear wheels of the pick-up hit the gravel on the side and the pick-up spun out of

control right intoan on-coming car.

I should have been killed, someone should have been killed.

No one even had a scratch.

Twice in the same spot I had been “saved” from disaster and death.

Coincidence?  Probably.

But it helped me see that I had probably already had more than my fair share of miracles.

In today’s gospel the Markan author tells two miracle stories–

A woman is healed after years of suffering, and a little girl is given a second chance at life.

The Markan author makes these “miracles” seem so effortless on the part of Jesus–

that you have to ask–why couldn’t he have done more–what doesn’t God, even now do more–

Why aren’t there more miracles?

Well maybe there are.

Maybe too what we need is the ability to see beyond our troubles to the miracles already

so much a part of our lives.  Count them this week.

One final thing. On my  way back, about thirty minutes later–the kid with the new pick-up was still there–just looking at his engine.