This homily was given at Our Lady of the Mountain Parish, Ashland, OR on the Seventeenth Tuesday in Ordinary Time, July 26, 2022. The audio is available here.
It takes time for a seed to grow, to mature.
When the plant grows tall and strong, it bears seeds of its own.
And the wind, without disturbing the plant, scatters its seed far and wide.
What began as a single seed, multiplies and fills the field with beauty and life.
The seed is the word of God, the truth and the beauty of our faith, which, at the end of a lifetime of growth, bears its sweetest fruit: eternal life.
This seed of faith is sown in us by Christ, and by his servants in the Church.
And in time, the seed of faith reaches maturity and bears seeds of its own.
The wind, which is the Holy Spirit, gathers up the seeds of our faith and scatters them throughout the field, the whole world, planting new seedlings of the faith in hearts near and far.
You who have children and grandchildren of your own have a very special role to play in this ecosystem of grace.
Like Saints Joachim and Anna, you must take care to nurture your own faith to full maturity, so as to bear abundant seed for the Holy Spirit to scatter in the hearts of your own families.
Our Lady learned to love God and give everything joyfully to Him from the teaching and example of her holy parents.
And the boy Jesus received from them, too, the gift of their faith: in their words, their prayers together, their whole manner of life.
Their faith was not perfect, maybe.
But it was mature, secure and solid.
Today, at this Holy Mass, ask the Lord to increase our faith to full maturity, so that we may bear seeds, and that the seeds may take root and produce fruit in the lives of our families, for the growth of the Kingdom of God.