Homily :: August 27, 2017
08/27/17: Twenty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time
08/27/17: Twenty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time - Fr Dave Reeson
(5:07, 4.68 MB)
08/27/17: Twenty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time - Fr Pat Nields
(6:20, 5:80 MB)
08/27/17: Twenty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time - Fr Dennis Hanneman
(9:14, 8:46 MB)
In today’s first reading we hear of the imminent dismissal of Shebna, master of the palace, or chief steward of the royal household. He would have had the great responsibility of both entrance and exit from Jerusalem. Shebna was removed from his position because he abused his authority. The subsequent installation of Eliakim provides clear context for today’s Gospel reading.
In Isaiah God appoints Eliakim. In Matthew God, in the person of Jesus, appoints Peter. Both are given the same responsibilities, Eliakim to the House of David, Peter to the House of the Son of David. Peter is, thus, made the chief steward of the Church, a role that is continued by the Pope and our Bishops. We too share in this ministry to the degree that we are leaders of our communities.
The second reading crucially illustrates the connection between today’s readings from Isaiah and Matthew: “Who has known the mind of the Lord or who has been His counselor? Or who has given the Lord anything that he may be repaid?” These two rhetorical questions clarify that God does not need His stewards to substitute their wisdom or will for His. Church leaders of all degrees of authority, ourselves included, must be vigilant against abusing their authority, lest the fate of Shebna be ours also.
By Dave Pitt © 2003, OCP. All rights reserved.