Saying no one is a prophet in their own land means that it is always difficult to be recognized for what we really are by those who think they know everything about us
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Today’s readings can be found here. Read Fr. Epicoco’s brief reflections on the daily Mass readings, Monday through Saturday, here. For Sunday Mass reading commentary from Fr. Rytel-Andrianik, see here.
There came a moment in Jesus’ life when even those who had been with Him for a long time, and perhaps even watched Him grow up, needed to understand that He was not just another regular guy but, mysteriously, something more. Noticing this difference is the result of being exposed to His wisdom and His miraculous signs.
But oftentimes we prefer to hold on to our prejudices rather than facts. Accepting reality is always a struggle, but if we deny it, we may fall into the trap of spending our lives locked in our convictions, completely missing out on what is actually in front of us.
Jesus proves with facts that He is the Messiah, but His countrymen are scandalized:
“‘Where did this man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been given to him? What deeds of power are being done by his hands! Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are not his sisters here with us?’ And they took offence at him.”
Hence Jesus’ famous, bitter remark: “Then Jesus said to them, ‘Prophets are not without honour, except in their home town, and among their own kin, and in their own house.’”
Saying no one is a prophet in their own land means that it is always difficult to be recognized for what we really are by those who think they know everything about us. Loving does not mean getting used to others, but remaining aware of their novelties – so we do not carry on locked in our prejudices. Only love can make life anew. Only love shows what God is truly and unexpectedly capable of.
Father Luigi Maria Epicoco is a priest of the Aquila Diocese and teaches Philosophy at the Pontifical Lateran University and at the ISSR ‘Fides et ratio,’ Aquila. He dedicates himself to preaching, especially for the formation of laity and religious, giving conferences, retreats and days of recollection. He has authored numerous books and articles. Since 2021, he has served as the Ecclesiastical Assistant in the Vatican Dicastery for Communication and columnist for the Vatican’s daily newspaper L’Osservatore Romano.