Homily – October 8, 2017

I hope you all have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving weekend with your families and friends.

In the light of the murderous event in Las Vegas this past Sunday I think the one thing for which we could be most grateful is the precious gift of life. It is a gift we often take for granted. It is a precious gift.

How many of the men and women, the young and the old ever imagined as they went to that concert on Sunday night that this would be their last day of life. How many survivors ever imagined the action of a mad man would alter their lives forever?

We pray for all those families who, in their confusion and pain are now enduring the silence of God, good people who ask ‘why, why us’? Mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters and spouses who in their ways echo the words of Christ on his cross, ‘my God, my God, why have you forsaken me’?

They endure what Christ endured, the silence of God. There is no answer to the ‘why’ they ask. There is no satisfactory answer to the question, no answer that would take away the pain and sorrow, the anger that comes with such an act of madness. We have to trust that the silence of God on their Good Friday will one day be replaced by the Alleluia of their Easters.

Time and again we witness the abiding potential for evil in the human family. When senseless tragedies like Vegas happen we are stunned by them and yet within that same tragedy we hear of so many acts of heroism taking place within the same event. The bravery of first responders who put themselves in harm’s way. People helping other people, putting themselves in danger to be there for total strangers.

Time and time again we witness the abiding potential for the good and the generous in our human family. That potential is what helps us through the awfulness of a Vegas. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. It really doesn’t. Sometime, somewhere this evil will happen again and it will bring out the same bravery and goodness in others to show that the good overcomes the bad and love conquerors the hateful heart.

As a parish family we can give thanks for the many manifestations of love and generosity we experience as a parish family. Your response to Share Life, your support of our refugee committee, your generosity to our food drive, our Christmas toy drive, your support of the works of our St. Vincent de Paul men and women and the list could go on and on.

In no way diminishing the evil on Las Vegas our lives and most people’s lives are blessed by good people. For this we are thankful.

As we continue to celebrate our Eucharist, our act of thanksgiving we pray for the victims and the heroes of Las Vegas and we thank God for the many good people who are a blessing in our lives…..