In today’s Gospel Our Lord Jesus Christ asks His disciples who people are saying He is. And His disciples reply, "John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, ‘One of the ancient prophets has arisen.’"
Yet, as Our Lord hears the answers of what other’s think about His identity, He does not stop there. Jesus wants to know who His disciples think He is. “But who do you say that I am?” And, Peter answers,“You, are the Christ of God.”
My brothers and sisters, Our Lord is asking us the same question. “Who do you say that I am?”
Now, if we sincerely acknowledge that Jesus is Christ, the Son of God, then we must also acknowledge what Our Lord says next in today’s Gospel.
He taught them that He must suffer and die, be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and rise on the third day. He adds, if anyone wishes to come after Me, he must take up his cross daily and follow Me.
This is true discipleship. If we if we want to live a Christian life, than we have to make a choice. If we want to follow Him, we must reject whatever is in our lives or the world that is not of Christ.
There are many examples of what this means. One example I will relate in light of the times in which we live today is a person who experiences same sex attraction. Like all Catholics, such a person is equally called to live chastely. To pick up his or her cross is to strive to lively chastely and to reject the gay identity that our society would force us to embrace.
|Fr John Paul Shea|
To deny ourselves and pick up our cross is not easy because we live in a culture that sees the cross of Christ as foolishness. Our culture teaches us the easy way. We don’t have to take the responsibility that comes with marriage. Just live together. Our culture tells us that we don’t have to worry about
Yet, as Christians we are called to deny the ways of the world opposed to our Christian faith! We are called to remain faithful to Our Lord and take up our crosses each day so to be numbered among His chosen ones. As long as we remain faithful to Our Lord we will share in his victory. But if we deny our Lord He will deny us.
We see so much wrong in our society and world today. We heard of the recent shootings in Orlando. We hear of shootings in our schools, and we wonder how such tragedies can take place in our country. Evils abound in our world today because our world has turned away from God! We witness such evils because we deny the cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ!
The children of today are growing up with no morals. They are growing up with no
Yet, this world we live in today is passing away, and it is taking many souls with it. In fact, we live in a time when many souls risk eternal damnation. Our Blessed Mother taught the children at Fatima to make sacrifices and to pray the Rosary because many souls are going to hell. My brothers and sisters, today more than ever is the day for each one of us to seek conversion in our lives. If we want to be disciples then we have to make a decision. Let us be true disciples, deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Him. For whoever wishes to save his life in this world will lose his life for eternity. But whoever loses his life in this world for the sake of Our Lord will find the gift of life eternal. Amen.