Another turbulent week in Australia. Whatever the word ‘ordinary’ means in our Liturgical usage, the Dictionary tells us the word is used to express “regular, normal customary usual” etc. On that definition, our Australia has had a rather ‘ordinary’ week.
A High Court Judge exposed by the High Court, an MP raided by ASIO and the Federal Police and suspended immediately by his leader, a spike in Victoria, mostly in Melbourne, of reported Covid-19 cases, tales of people refusing to be tested, and travel bans on Victorians by most of the other States (just in time for school holidays). Today’s report of 40,000 new cases in one day in America helps the perspective.
Against all that, we are called to consider in part, “Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me; and those who welcome me, welcome the one who sent me.”
It is the call to mission and to spread the good news, news which if we all adhere to it and try our best, would really see a different world and that world would become ‘ordinary’ for all.
Paul reminds us of the way forward…our Baptism in Christ. Mysterious, yes, but unlike the mystery of Covid-19 which brings disease, sickness, suffering and death, Baptism in faith leads us in the resurrection of Christ “to live a new life.”
On the surface, the seemingly harsh sayings in the Gospel really call us to get our priorities right. As Augustine said, “You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.” Augustine loved his mother Monica more when he discovered his love for God. So too for us.
Covid-19 may ultimately be a call to wake up and be reminded that “You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy people.”
Our mantra this week, amidst all the doom, gloom and bad news, is to recall that we have been called out of darkness and into his marvellous light.
Hence, we pray:
“Forever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.”
P.S. As I celebrate 58 years of Priesthood this Monday, it is a bit confronting to realise that I have been a priest longer than our new Bishop has been on the Earth. Peace to all.