Memorial of Saint Irenaeus, Bishop and Martyr

When Jesus saw a crowd around him,
he gave orders to cross to the other shore.
A scribe approached and said to him,

Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.

Jesus answered him,

Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests,
but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head.

Another of his disciples said to him,

Lord, let me go first and bury my father.

But Jesus answered him,

Follow me,
and let the dead bury their dead.

Matthew 8:18-22

The peace of the Lord be with you.

In his time with us here on earth Jesus regularly challenged conventional ways of thinking and acting. In doing so he was not trying to be contrary or controversial, he was trying to help us to better understand how things are naturally and appropriately ordered.

In the gospel reading, Jesus is trying to help someone see that he is more than just a teacher and he is challenging some social conventions that are major parts of Jewish and Greek culture about the care for the dead. For our own sake there is nothing more important than glorifying God in our interactions, thoughts, and daily practices. As Bishop Baron frequently points out it is not that God needs these things, but that we need them — as they help us to be more fully human.

In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Readings for Monday, June 28, 2021