Before starting his homily Father Moreno gave the congregation permission to fan themselves with the Parish Bulletins, if they got one Mass. He said since it was so humid they would not be offending him.
Let us pray for the Holy Spirit to fill us with a full breeze of coolness to refresh us.
He was a tough guy, raw hide, no one messed with him. He had escaped from prison. He was Cool Hand Luke in the movie played by Paul Newman.
Father Moreno made up this scene where Cool Hand Luke sees a little Catholic church; he goes inside and kneels, there is a cross. Cool Hand Luke asks God three (3) questions: Old Man, Cool Hand Luke calls God “Old Man” because he probably called his own father “Old Man”
1) Old Man, what do you want from me?
2) Old Man, why did you make me?
3) Old Man, why am I here?
Cool Hand Luke had a personal relationship with God because he spoke bluntly with God and confronted reality.
Jesus had a personal relationship with His Father because He confronts reality. Jesus experienced rejection, alienation, isolation, sadness, dismay, joy, peace and love.
In the Gospel Jesus feels the loss of his cousin John The Baptist who was beheaded. Yes the Bible has a lot of juicy parts in it. The story about how John The Baptist got beheaded is one of those.
Jesus feels the pain of separation from the one he loves. Jesus the Man of prayer goes off in silence to be alone, to be with His Father. We must be people of prayer. Instead of reacting violently, we must react with charity. Jesus withdraws to gain his composure and perspective, but the crowds follow Him. They follow Him because they have seen his miracles, his healing; he has spoken to their hearts.
Each one of us must answer the question: “How do I know Jesus?”
The Holy Spirit brought us together in this very moment. Jesus is here because where two or three are gathered in the Name of Jesus; Jesus is there. Jesus looks at them and at us with pity, compassion, with passion, with love.
Jesus cured the sick, cured those in darkness, cured the brokenness, made them whole, brought them peace, and made them complete, filled with happiness and love.
Jesus does not send anyone away, he asks us to feed the poor with His body and blood. We are to feed the lonely, the afraid, the blind, the depressed, and the suicidal with ourselves. We are the image of Jesus; we are the disciples of Jesus. We are to have compassion not judgment.
When Father Moreno was a young boy he read about Francis of Assisi who was called to be a knight, not to be afraid to love, not to be afraid to heal.
In the generosity of God we are blessed with abundance. Thank God for the love He has given us today by bringing us here today.
Let us pray to be knights, to be soldiers; to fight violence with non-violence, to fight hatred with love, to fight disorder with unity.
Announcements after Mass:
- A representative from the Knights of Columbus spoke briefly about the history of the Knights and invited new members. Father asked all the Knights to come up in front of the altar and he blessed them.
- Three (3) young people from the group “Alvernia” invited the congregation to their bake sale to raise funds for the upcoming Youth Retreat in October.
- A representative from the Parish Jamaica committee invited the congregation to purchase raffle tickets.