Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Feast of the Presentation

Rev 3:1-6, 14-22
Lk 19:1-10

“Zacchaeus, come down quickly, for today I must stay at your house.” An invitation all of us are given, not just Zacchaeus. All of us are asked to come down quickly, for Jesus longs to be with us. Of course, Zacchaeus had to come down because he was in a tree, trying to see Jesus, trying to catch a glimpse, and because of his short stature, he had to climb the tree to see Jesus. Well, there is short, and there is short. I propose to you that we are as short as Zacchaeus, and without climbing we cannot see him either. It would be easy, I suppose, to stay in the crowd, maybe catching a quick glimpse of Jesus, but if we choose that route, are we fulfilling the call that came to us in Baptism? Baptism was a step, the first step in climbing that tree, that tree of Sacraments and graces that allows us to see Jesus. Even climbing the tree isn’t something we can do alone. We need help, we need guidance, we need examples. Mary, whose feast we celebrate today, is just such an example. She shows us the power of trust, she shows us the power that comes in unconditional love. For that example we must be grateful. In our own lives we have examples that are closer, more personal to us. I am thinking today particularly of the example I received from my father. In the deaf community he was a leader. He was a leader because of his generosity, generosity with time; we had no money. He loved us, his family, and he loved his family of the deaf. He gave unselfishly, he worked to make life better for all deaf people, for all people. He modeled true diakonia, true service. He climbed the tree and showed me the way. It has been nine years, nine years to this day since he finally climbed the tree to the top, no need to come down again. May I climb half as far.
Deacon John
Feast of the Presentation
Nov. 21, 2006