Pastor's Desk: 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Posted 8th August 2015 in Pastor's Desk

In place of the Pastor’s Desk this week, we include the following extract from Intercom Magazine:

The Deep End - Murmurings

Both Elijah and the crowd at Capernaum murmur in their respective wildernesses. The prophet even craves death. His journey has made him disillusioned and he begs for release. The stories of Elijah’s journey to Horeb and Jesus’ extended discourse allude to the older tale of the Israelites in the desert complaining about God – or more accurately God’s perceived absence. At the same time, they need to get over their own notions, or misplaced desires, and stop making God in their own image.

An angel arrives to save Elijah and help him on his journey. Jesus, contrastingly, offers himself as the journey’s end. But his audience react with incredulity. They know his family. He is a local. How could this rural ‘wannabe’ tell them something they do not already know?

The Christian community is the body of Christ. Perhaps it is for this reason that Paul asks his readers to stop moaning and ‘be friends.’ In the body of Christ gathered around his table we become friends with God as well as one another. Atonement becomes ‘at-one-ment’ and murmuring gives way to friendship. Leaving behind the wilderness, we might find our way back to the garden, where in that most ancient of stories God walks and talks with us, as friends.

Paul Clogher

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