Sorry, I have no text this time.
Father Barry Stechschulte, ordained in May, visited this past weekend and offered a Mass at each parish. He wanted to do this as a thank you to the parishes, as he was here last summer in his deacon year. He took two of my three Masses.
My homily arose from reflecting on the readings and trying to connect the first reading with the Gospel. The key I saw in the first reading was the Book of Wisdom offering a counter to a Greek-dominated, pagan culture that threatened Faith in the one true God. Wisdom emphasizes that we are made for eternity, even if people deny that as foolishness (true then, true today); and reiterates that we are made in God's image. Our culture denies the dignity and intrinsic value of life, opting for a utilitarian view: thus, unborn children with physical defects or disabilities aren't welcome, and the elderly are expected to get out of the way.
But our message is life is worth it: Don't give up on life!
The woman in the Gospel didn't give up, however hard it must have been to persevere. I offered several examples of how we might be similarly tempted: being out of work, struggling with a sin, wondering when family or friends will turn their lives around. I talked a bit about the wonderful sacrament of reconciliation and how that helps us not give up. All the sacraments are God's help so we need not give up. I talked about how much fascination we have with the destruction of the world, but we know that God doesn't give up on us: why become human if he were going to do that? The Eucharist, above all, is God's sign that he doesn't give up on us: he not only comes near us, he longs to be one with us and us with him. Don't give up!