This morning, Father focused his homily on the first parable in the Gospel, the seed that sprouts without the man who sows the seeds knowing how (the full Gospel reading was Mark 4: 26-34, which includes the mustard seed parable. This parable is MK 4:26-29). He commented that we never know which of our actions will be the seed that bears fruit and brings someone closer to God, so we need to conduct ourselves at all times as Christians. He gave a couple of examples where converts were won to the faith not through hearing inspired preaching, but by witnessing simple, basic acts of Christian charity. In one case, a Muslim woman in Iraq, during the Iraq war (he didn’t specify when) converted because she heard and saw the chaplain praying not only for the deceased American soldiers, but also for deceased Iraqis, including Muslims. The idea that you could treat your enemies with respect, rather than denying their humanity, was powerful and brought this woman to the faith. He also highlighted a group in India that is helping to alleviate hunger by convincing factories that clean and mill wheat to give the chaff to them, rather than wash it away in the streams. The factories were so inefficient that lots of wheat was being lost along with the chaff, and this group would take the chaff and separate out the wheat to give to needy families.
He also tied this to the second reading, specifically the call to “aspire to please” Christ, and to have faith and courage that what we do, when we do it in accordance with Christ’s teachings, will eventually bear fruit. Not in our time, but in Gods.
Over all, a rather pleasant homily, with quite a bit to think about and, more importantly, to put into practice.