The role of the modern day prophet Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Hensley   
July 5, 2015
14th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Ezekiel 2: 2-5
Psalm 123: 1-4
2 Corinthians 12: 7-10
Mark 6: 1-6

The message that comes through loudly in these readings is that the role of the prophet, the role of the person announcing the will of God, is a pretty thankless lot.

God commands Ezekiel to speak a word of correction to the Israelites, who he describes in no uncertain terms as "rebels who have rebelled against me; they and their ancestors have revolted against me to this very day."

Jesus is amazed when he comes to his native place and begins to teach in the synagogue. "Where did this man get all this?" is one of the comments spoken against him. That led Jesus to say, "A prophet is not without honor except in his native place."

But neither Ezekiel nor Jesus were deterred in carrying out the mission God had placed on their hearts. They continued to speak God's word to the crowds.

I've known a few genuine prophets. One was Fr. Richard Thomas, who worked with the poor of El Paso, Texas, and Juarez, Mexico. He followed God's instructions obediently and saw God work. I'm sure he was met with opposition, but that is not what anyone will remember. They will remember God's miracles that followed after his obedient actions.

Another was Phil Record, a highly placed member of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram's management team, and a person to whom many Catholics on the staff came when they were facing a personal or spiritual dilemma and needed wise counsel.

Phil was no mealy-mouthed disciple. I'm sure that when a firm correction was needed, the man who had served as the paper's ombudsman and managing editor at different times spoke whatever he felt was God's counsel. But he would always have done it with a heart filled with love for the person before him. That was Phil.

What the scriptural stories of opposition don't examine is the motive force that makes the prophet act in the first place. But that's what I saw in Father Thomas and Phil, and that is what we see in Jesus. The prophet first of all loves God, fully and completely. In addition, he loves the people God has had him address.

This column is offered in cooperation with The North Texas Catholic of Fort Worth, Texas.

Daily Scripture Readings Print E-mail
Sunday, Sep. 01, 2013 -- 10:21 AM
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Scripture readings from the United States Conference
of Catholic Bishops website.
Pope's Prayer Intentions: June 2015 Print E-mail
June Universal Intention

Unemployed. That the unemployed may receive support and find the work they need to live in dignity

June Evangelization Intention
Faith in Europe. That Europe may rediscover its Christian roots through the witness of believers.
Holy Days of Obligation Print E-mail

The following are Holy Days of Obligation for 2015.

Holy Days of Obligation Description
Wednesday, Jan. 1
Solemnity of Mary the Mother of God
Thursday, May 14
Ascension Thursday
Saturday, Aug. 15
Solemnity of the Assumption (abrogated because it falls on Saturday)
Sunday, Nov. 1
All Saints
Tuesday, Dec.8
Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception
Thursday, Dec. 25
Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord (Christmas)
Prayer to St. Raphael Print E-mail

photo of Pilgrim Icon of St. Raphael

Glorious Archangel St. Raphael, great prince of the heavenly court, you are illustrious for your gifts of wisdom and grace. You are a guide of those who journey by land or sea or air, consoler of the afflicted, and refuge of sinners.

We beg you, assist us in all our needs and in all the sufferings of this life, as once you helped the young Tobias on his travels. Because you are the "medicine of God" we humbly pray you to heal the many infirmities of our souls and the ills that afflict our bodies.

We especially ask your guidance of our diocese as we journey toward the rebuilding of a cathedral bearing your name, and the great grace of purity to prepare us to be temples of the Holy Spirit. As our intercessor, beg the Blessed Trinity to prosper the work of our hands and, above all, to bring us, face-to-face, into their Holy presence.


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