4th Sunday of the Year (A) 2017

We continue with our talks on the ‘Breaking of Bread.’ Just imagine a Family celebration, be it to welcome a newborn member, to bid a final farewell to a aged member who has passed on, to celebrate a new marriage or a jubilee or a Christmas get together. Imagine the sort of atmosphere there would be if there were tensions between members of the family, unresolved disputes, even overt bickering and dislikes. What would your reaction be? ‘Never again will I attend such a farcical event,’ you would resolve. And you would be right. We always begin our celebration of the ‘Breaking of Bread’ with a rite of reconciliation. Our celebration of the Breaking of Bread is a travesty, a farcical exercise, should there exist tensions, disputes, active dislikes, bickering, bitterness, among us. Even should other members of God’s celebrating family know nothing of this situation it effects us all because Our God, who’s love, generosity, compassion and forgiveness we are celebrating, knows all about it, and is hugely affected by it. Just imagine you are enjoying your favourite salad and then you come across a fat snail happily munching away!! I must not deceive myself that the Breaking of Bread is of the slightest benefit to me or to my God if I am actively nourishing dislike or hatred towards anyone or any group of people, be they members of the congregation or not. I am just the slug in the salad. So I cannot overemphasise the importance of reconciliation and mutual forgiveness as we gather for the Breaking of Bread. Reconciliation and mutual forgiveness brings peace and joy to our lives. It lifts the dark veil and burden of dislike, jealousy, and desiring revenge, from our shoulders. Should I humbly and seriously recognise and acknowledge my faults and failings and truly desire reconciliation and offer forgiveness, then I will receive these gifts from my God as soon as I am capable of accepting them. Then I am free to lift up my voice, in company with the rest of God’s family, in praise and thanksgiving to our God, as we say or sing together, ‘Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to people of good will.’ Then we sit and listen to the word of God in the readings and the homily.