September 23, 2021
Memorial of Saint Pius of Pietrelcina, Priest (Padre Pio)
Herod the tetrarch heard about all that was happening
and he was greatly perplexed because some were saying,
“John has been raised from the dead”;
others were saying, “Elijah has appeared”;
still others, “One of the ancient prophets has arisen.”
But Herod said, “John I beheaded.
Who then is this about whom I hear such things?”
And he kept trying to see him.
After every Mass we celebrate I get to stand outside and greet my fellow parishioners here at Sts Simon and Jude. I know who you are and if someone asks if I know you, I get to say, “Yes, they are a parishioner.”
Same with you, as you leave, we can shake hands and exchange pleasantries and when someone asks if you know Deacon Kenneth, you say, “Yes, he’s a deacon at our parish.” But just because we get to say hello to one another and you know, I know, where you attend church doesn’t mean we “know” each other.
That’s where we find Herod today. He’s heard so much about Jesus and the ministry of Jesus he wants to know who Jesus is.
He’s confused because people are saying that Jesus is Elijah come back. Others say he is John reborn and still others say Jesus is one of the prophets.
Herod rightly knows it isn’t John because he had just recently had John beheaded.
He wants to find out who Jesus is and to meet him. The thing is, he doesn’t really want to “KNOW” Jesus.
With Herod it is all superficial. He wants to be able to say, when meeting at the feasts and such, he could discuss how he knew Jesus as a conversation element – not to discuss the teachings.
I fear that we too want to just be acquainted with Jesus and not really know him. We are fine with attending Masses and hearing the scriptures, but do we really want to get down to talking with him face to face? Do we really want that kind of relationship? Or do we prefer to just leave it superficial?
Today, when you leave here, why don’t you make a commitment to get to really know him? Why don’t you sit down and have that prayerful conversation? Get to know him for real – not just superficially.
Then when someone asks if you know Jesus – you can say, “Yes, he’s my Lord and my God.”
At least that’s what I heard Him say…