Busy and Blind

This homily was given at St. Patrick’s Seminary, Menlo Park, CA on the First Friday in Advent, December 2, 2022. The audio is available here.


Archbishop Sample says the greatest avenue of spiritual attack facing priests and bishops and seminarians right now … is busyness.

Busyness causes a kind of blindness: we see the trees, but we miss the forest.

We see the 101 things on our to-do list, but we miss the purpose.

Wherever the spirit of busyness takes over, there is worry, hurry, anxiety, restlessness, a lack of peace, deep exhaustion. 

And at the end of the day, we’re tired but wired, unable to rest, and we try in vain to treat our weariness of soul with our familiar addictions, which only leave us more empty and hopeless than before.

Make no mistake: the spirit of busyness is antithetical to the Gospel of Jesus.

There is no beatitude that says, “Blessed are the busy.”

The demons and the damned are busy in hell, burdened under Satan’s yoke. But the angels and the saints live lightly, rejoicing in the presence of God.

Jesus offers us, blinded as we are by busyness, the choice to live differently.

We may have 100 things to do before this semester ends, but remember, onething is necessary: to live in the presence of the living God.

Today, Jesus calls us to declare war on the spirit of busyness: to keep our Holy Hours; to take a day off; to go for a walk and listen for his voice; to turn our laptops off at the end of the day and go to bed, trusting in Him.

As we receive Jesus today at this Holy Mass, we release the spirit of busyness and we receive the gentle yoke of Jesus, saying: “Lord, one thing I ask: let me hear your voice; let me see your face; let me dwell in your house, with you, all the days of my life.” 

For those who keep God before their eyes, not keeping busy but keeping close to Him, will see the bounty of the Lord even now in the land of the living; we will live lightly, and on the last day, we will enter into His rest, in the kingdom of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

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