February 3, 2016

Gospel MK 6:1-6
Jesus departed from there and came to his native place,
accompanied by his disciples.
When the sabbath came he began to teach in the synagogue,
and many who heard him were astonished.
They said, “Where did this man get all this?
What kind of wisdom has been given him?
What mighty deeds are wrought by his hands!
Is he not the carpenter, the son of Mary,
and the brother of James and Joseph and Judas and Simon?
And are not his sisters here with us?”
And they took offense at him.
Jesus said to them,
“A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and among his own kin and in his own house.”
So he was not able to perform any mighty deed there,
apart from curing a few sick people by laying his hands on them.
He was amazed at their lack of faith.
Reflection:
“They said, ‘Where did this man get all this?
What kind of wisdom has been given him?
What mighty deeds are wrought by his hands!
Is he not the carpenter, the son of Mary,
and the brother of James and Joseph and Judas and Simon?
And are not his sisters here with us?’
And they took offense at him.”
Sadly, people may tend to put others into “compartments” based on their family background, occupations, or status in life.
Jesus’ neighbors “took offense at him” saying, “Is he not a carpenter…” thereby implying that because he performed manual labor, he could not possibly possess any wisdom.
“A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and among his own kin and in his own house.”
There is a side of human nature that can blind us to the benefit of the message from someone we know who has become successful or famous.
The old saying applies here: “Familiarity breeds contempt.” A newly ordained priest may give the most profound homily in his home parish, but his message may be lost on those who played ball with him as a child.
“So he was not able to perform any mighty deed there,
apart from curing a few sick people by laying his hands on them.”
When we dismiss others through the blindness of our own prejudices and judgements, then we lose the wisdom and blessings that God is trying to send to us through that person.

“They do not know, nor do they comprehend; for their eyes are shut, so that they cannot see, and their minds as well, so that they cannot understand.”
Isaiah 44:18