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Shine the Light of Christ - Weekday Homily Video

By: Father David Marcham on September 25th, 2023

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Shine the Light of Christ - Weekday Homily Video

Love thy Neighbor  |  Return to the Church

If you’ve ever gone to an Ordination of Deacons, then you have heard the bishop say these words to the newly ordained: “Believe what you read, teach what you believe, and practice what you teach.” Every time I have heard those words, they have had the same powerful effect as the first time I heard them.

Hearing and Responding

The bishop is reminding the newly ordained deacons to believe the Word of God, to teach God’s Word, and to practice it in their lives. A Deacon or Priest is called in a particular way to believe, teach, and practice the Word of God. (It is not only their call but their solemn responsibility.)

Likewise, each person, married or single, man or woman, boy or girl, who hears God’s Word preached, whether at Mass, retreat, or taught at religious education or bible study, etc., is also called to believe what is heard in the Word of God, to share what you believe, and to practice what you share.

This is what today’s gospel parable is driving at … the lighted lamp represents God’s Word and is meant not to be hidden but elevated on a lampstand. So, the person who hears, understands, and practices the Word of God is like a lighted lamp that shines the light of Christ for others to see, sometimes in some really dark places or difficult times.

Lifelong Learning

At this point, you might be thinking, that’s a lot to ask. I don’t know if I know enough to share what I believe. Okay, now we’re talking; this is the challenge: to really listen to God’s Word to know it well enough that we can see how it relates to our lives. And, if we find we have questions, talk to your priest or deacon who can help find answers, as well as suggest good readings or courses as well as an annotated Bible and the Catechism. Our walk with Jesus is meant to be a lifelong learning process, one that is fueled by listening carefully and then thinking.

I can remember before I went to seminary, having the basics down about our faith but not knowing the context for the readings or psalms. It was when I became a lector in my parish that my focus on God’s Word increased, and so did my questions.

It's when we learn the story behind the story, whether in the Old Testament or the New Testament, that we start to make connections between God’s efforts to lead us to holiness and heaven and man’s repeated stumbles along the way and God graciously granting us new beginnings.

Contributions of the Faithful

Today’s first reading speaks of the renewal of the Temple and the contributions the faithful made with their material offerings. Our Church is always being renewed in Christ, and yes, we need material donations just as in the building of the Temple. But we also need to contribute to Christ’s Mystical Body, the Church, by being bearers of His light to the world, being willing sharers of the Good News, beginning in our families but not stopping there, for the world needs to see the Light of Christ, as only you can shine it.

St. James challenges us all when he says, “Be doers of the Word and not hearers only.” If that’s our goal, then not only will we grow in faith, but we’ll also bring Christ to those who most need Him.

May God bless you and your families this holy day!

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About Father David Marcham

Reverend David S. Marcham is the Vice Postulator for the Cause of Venerable Patrick Peyton, and Director of the Father Peyton Guild, whose members pray for Father Peyton’s beatification and spread his message of the importance of Family Prayer. Prior to becoming a seminarian, Father David was a physical therapist and clinical instructor, serving hospital inpatients and outpatients throughout the greater Boston area for eleven years. In 1998 he heard the call to priesthood and was ordained in the Archdiocese of Boston in 2005. Father David grew up in Quincy, MA, and has fond memories of playing soccer, tennis and running track. You’re never without a friend when Father David is around, as he welcomes everyone into his circle with a smile on his face!