MORNING CELEBRATION BROADCAST LIVE
FROM THE CHAPEL OF CASA SANTA MARTA
HOMILY OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS
"Know our idols"
Thursday, March 26, 2020
Introduction to Mass
In these days of so much suffering, there is so much fear. The fear of the elderly, who are alone in retirement homes or in the hospital or in their home, and do not know what can happen. The fear of unemployed workers who think how to feed their children and see hunger coming. The fear of so many social servants who at the moment are helping to keep society going and can catch the disease. Even the fear - the fears - of each of us: everyone knows what his own is. Let us pray to the Lord to help us to trust and to tolerate and overcome fears.
In the first reading there is the scene of the mutiny of the people. Moses went to the Mount to receive the Law: God gave it to him, in stone, written by his finger. But the people got bored and crowded around Aaron and said: “But, this Moses, for a long time we don't know where he is, where he went and we are without a guide. Make us a god to help us move forward. " And Aaron, who later will be a priest of God but there he was a priest of stupidity, of idols, said: "But yes, give me all the gold and silver you have", and they give everything and they made that calf of gold (see Ex. 32,1-7).
In the Psalm we heard the lament of God: "They made a calf on the Horeb, prostrated themselves to a metal statue, exchanged their glory with the figure of a bull eating grass" (Ps. 105 (106), 19- 20). And here, at this moment, when the Reading begins: "The Lord said to Moses:" Go, go down, because your people that you brought out of the land of Egypt were perverted. They did not delay in moving away from the way I had indicated to them. They made a calf of molten metal then prostrated themselves before him, offered sacrifices and said: 'Here is your god, Israel, the one who brought you out of the land of Egypt' "" (Ex. 32, 7-9). A true apostasy! From the living God to idolatry. He did not have patience to wait for Moses to come back: they wanted some news, they wanted something, a liturgical show, something ...
On this I would like to mention some things. First of all, that idolatrous nostalgia in the people: in this case, he thought of the idols of Egypt, but the nostalgia of returning to the idols, returning to the worst, not knowing how to wait for the living God. This nostalgia is a disease, even ours. We begin to walk with the enthusiasm of being free, but then the complaints begin: "But yes, this is a hard time, the desert, I am thirsty, I want water, I want meat ... but in Egypt we ate onions, the good things and there is no here… ”. Always, idolatry is selective: it makes you think about the good things it gives you, but it doesn't make you see bad things. In this case, they thought about how they were at the table, with these meals so good that they liked them so much, but they forgot that this was the slavery table. Idolatry is selective.
Then, another thing: idolatry makes you lose everything. Aaron, to make the calf, asks them: "Give me gold and silver": but it was the gold and silver that the Lord had given them when he said to them: "Ask the Egyptians for gold on loan", and then they went with them. It is a gift of the Lord and with the gift of the Lord they make the idol (Ex. 11,1-9). And this is very bad. But this mechanism also happens to us: when we have attitudes that lead us to idolatry, we are attached to things that distance us from God, because we make another god and do it with the gifts that the Lord has given us. With intelligence, with will, with love, with heart ... they are the gifts proper to the Lord that we use to make idolatry.
Yes, some of you can tell me: “But I don't have idols at home. I have the Crucifix, the image of the Madonna, who are not idols ... "- No, no: in your heart. And the question we should ask today is: what is the idol you have in your heart, in my heart. That hidden exit where I feel good, which takes me away from the living God. And we also have a very clever attitude with idolatry: we know how to hide idols, as Rachel did when she ran away from her father and hid them in the camel saddle and between clothes. We too, among our favorite clothes, have hidden many idols.
The question I would like to ask today is: what is my idol? My idol of worldliness ... and idolatry also comes to piety, because they wanted the golden calf not to make a circus: no. To make adoration: "They prostrated themselves before him" (Cf. Ps. 105 (106), 19 and Ex. 32.8). Idolatry leads you to a wrong religiosity, on the contrary: many times the worldliness, which is an idolatry, makes you change the celebration of a sacrament in a worldly feast. An example: I don't know, I think, we think, I don't know, let alone a wedding celebration. You do not know if it is a sacrament where the newlyweds really give everything and love each other before God and promise to be faithful before God and receive the grace of God, or it is an exhibition of models, how they are dressed other and the other ... worldliness. It is an idolatry. It is an example, this. Because idolatry does not stop: it always goes on.
Today the question that I would like to ask to all of us, to all: what are my idols? Everyone has their own. What are my idols. Where I hide them. And may the Lord not find us at the end of life, and say of each of us: “You are perverted. You have strayed from the way I had pointed out. You prostrated yourself before an idol. "
We ask the Lord for the grace to know our idols. And if we can't chase them away, at least keep them on the corner ...
Prayer to make spiritual communion:
People who cannot communicate make spiritual communion:
My Jesus, I believe that you are truly present in the Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire you in my soul. Since I cannot receive you sacramentally now, at least spiritually come to my heart. As already come, I embrace you and I join everything with you. Don't let it ever separate me from you.
FULL TEXT + Image Source: Vatican.va - Unofficial Translation