God Calls. We Follow.
Jesus said, “No one who sets a hand to the plow
and looks to what was left behind is fit for the kingdom of God.”
13th SUNDAY Ordinary Time Cycle C
The Salesians are inviting young people to join them in the work for the young. They tell them that their life is HARD, HAPPY and HOLY. It is a great joy to be with the young. But to do it one must be holy. It is because it is really difficult.
Somehow Jesus says that same thing in the gospel today. Jesus is on the way to Jerusalem where He will be crucified. As he walks towards His death three people ask to follow Him.
The first said “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.” One who follows Christ has no permanent abode. He goes where he is needed.
And to second one replied, “Lord, let me go first and bury my father.”
Jesus answered him, “Let the dead bury their dead. But you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” One who follows Christ leaves his family behind to take care more people he is not even a kin to.
And a third one said, “I will follow you, Lord, but first let me say farewell to my family at home.”
To him Jesus said, “No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the kingdom of God.” One who follows Christ has no time to take back his decision.
I remember my own vocation story when I entered the seminary for the first time. When I was in Grade 6 Elementary it was my first time to study in Don Bosco. We were told that Don Bosco always said that every boy that enters his school was brought in by the Blessed Virgin Mary. When I told my parents that I wish to enter the seminary, they brought me to San Jose Minor Seminary in Quezon City since our parish priest then studied there. And so it happened that I stayed in Don Bosco only for one year. But at my second year in high school the Jesuits decided to close down the seminary. On hearing this sad news, the salesian who had been in-charge of my Elementary batch when I was still in Don Bosco phoned me up. In fact he invited me to go back to Don Bosco. And since I was coming from the seminary the principal in Don Bosco suggested that I go instead to the Salesian Aspirantate (minor seminary) in Pampanga. On hindsight Mary had to close down the seminary to return me to Don Bosco.
Recently I have made contact with my seminary batch in San Jose after half a century. Besides myself there are two pastors in our batch. One lives a consecrated life within the Focolare Movement. The others are all successful here and abroad as judge, architect, doctor, etc. I admit that their lives had been more colorful and maybe even harder than mine. I’d say we have all answered God’s call wherever we find ourselves now.
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