05 May 2020

Do you follow?

4th Week of Easter (T)
Fr. Philip Neri Powell, OP
St Dominic Priory, NOLA

From my lit prof days I can still hear the undergrads whining at me, “Just tell us what the poem means! Just tell us plainly.” I didn't know how to do that. Not b/c poetry is a code to be broken for its hidden meaning. Not b/c I was sworn to secrecy by the Illuminati of Poetry. But b/c poetry is a language you have to live with for a while. Like any language it's learned in immersion. Same goes for the providential will of God. The Pharisees want what my undergrads wanted – a plain-spoken, pre-chewed, easy to digest admission from Jesus that he is the Christ. Had they been immersed in the prophetic language of the Father's providential will they would've known Jesus to be the Messiah. Had they persevered in the tradition – the handed-down wisdom – of the prophets they would've seen his works and heard his words as those of his Father. Somewhere along the way they lost the plot and fell into a darkness and deafness of their own making. We are given a lifetime to immerse ourselves in the words and deeds of the Messiah's language of forgiveness, sacrifice, and love. As dangerous as it is to follow him, it is more dangerous still to follow the blind shepherds who would sell us to the wolves. Christ knows his own. How well do we know and follow him?

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