September 11, 2016
Two little boys, ages 8 and 10, were excessively mischievous. They were always getting into trouble and their parents knew that, if any mischief occurred in their town, their sons were probably involved. They boys' mother heard that a priest in town had been successful in disciplining children, so she asked if he would speak with her boys. The priest agreed, but asked to see them individually. So the mother sent her 8-year-old first, in the morning, with the older boy to see the clergyman in the afternoon.
The priest, a huge man with a booming voice, sat the younger boy down and asked him sternly, "Where is God?" They boy's mouth dropped open, but he made no response, sitting there with his mouth hanging open, wide-eyed. So the clergyman repeated the question in an even sterner tone, "Where is God!!?" Again the boy made no attempt to answer. So the priest raised his voice even more and shook his finger in the boy's face and yelled, "WHERE IS GOD!?"
The boy screamed and bolted from the room, ran directly home and dove into his closet, slamming the door behind him. When his older brother found him in the closet, he asked, "What happened?"
The younger brother, gasping for breath replied, "We are in big trouble this time. God is missing - and they think we did it!"
Is God missing? This Sunday is Sept. 11. Do you remember 9/11 in 2001? The September 11 attacks were a series of four coordinated terrorist attacks by the Islamic terrorist group on the United States on the morning of September 11, 2001. The attacks killed 2,996 people and injured over 6,000 others and caused at least $10 billion in property and infrastructure damage and $3 trillion in total costs. Where is God?
Many people think that God is missing, or he is away or he doesn’t love this world anymore. That is why the evils deem to triumph everywhere.
But, the Gospel of this week shows us that God still cares. His mercy still reaches out to the lost, the outcasts and everyone else.
If God had a refrigerator, your magnet picture would be on it. If he had a wallet, your photo would be in it. Whenever you want to talk, he'll listen. Face it, friend, he's crazy about you. God is crazy about you, about me and about every single person on this planet. That is the meaning of the Gospel of this Sunday: “Lost and Found.” The lost coin was found; the lost sheep was found and the lost son was welcomed back. In a way, every one of us has been lost once in a while and the Lord has found us. Also shouldn't this Gospel cause us to think one more time about the lost sheep in our own circle? If God does not give up on the worst of us, if he would work even up to his crucifixion, why do we give up on them? I challenge you to find a lost one and invite him/her back to the Church this week.
Read the Gospel again: “Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost” (Lk 15: 6). “Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost” (Lk 15:9). “We have to celebrate and rejoice because this brother of yours was dead and has come to life; he was lost and has been found” (Lk 15:32).