Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Homily for 1 Sep 2016 (School Mass)

1 Sep 2016

Did you hear what Saint Paul said?  He said if any of us thinks we’re smart, we’re wrong.  He said if anybody wants to be wise, then they have to be foolish; in order to be smart, we have to be dumb.  And that’s kind of a strange thing to hear on the first day of school, isn’t it.  It almost sounds like Saint Paul is saying: “Don’t bother with school; just go home and play—you’ll be smarter that way.”

But that’s not exactly what he means.  Saint Paul is just saying that if we really want to know things—if we want really want to learn—then we always have to be able to say: “There’s more for me to learn.”  There’s always more for us to learn.  It doesn’t matter if you’re in First Grade, or Eighth Grade, or whether you’re ten years old or sixty years old, there’s always more for us to learn.

Imagine if your brain is like a ziploc bag or a backpack.  As long as you keep the zipper open, you can put stuff in it.  But as soon as you zip it up, that’s it.  If we want to learn more about our friends or family, if we want to learn more about God and about ourselves, then we have to keep the zipper open.  We have to keep our minds open, and say, “There’s always more for me to learn.”

And when that happens, we can be like Peter there in the boat.  He let Jesus teach him, and pretty soon he had so many fish, his boat almost sank.  As soon as we say, “I don’t know everything, but I want to learn,” Jesus will start to fill us up with gratitude and wonder about everything around us, all of creation and more.  But we don’t have to worry about learning too much.  Remember, when Peter’s boat was about to sink, Jesus was right there to help him.

And Jesus is right here to help us, too.  But he can’t help us if we think we know everything already.  So, as we start a new school, it’s good to remember that we’re all students—doesn’t matter how old or young we are.  And Jesus is our teacher.  Just remember to keep your mind unzipped so Jesus can fill it.  

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