12th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A
6-9 year olds
(Adults, begin by reading the Gospel aloud to the child, unless the child is a very fluent reader.)
In the reading for this Sunday, Jesus is preparing his disciples to go out into the world to tell people about the Kingdom of God. Some of the disciples are worried. What will they say? What will people think?
nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known.
There is a great force revealing truth to the world. It cannot be stopped, like waves, endlessly rolling up on sand.
What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light;
God's plan is for all the world to know truth, to know God's love and mercy. It is a plan of revealing, of shining the light on what is real, what is good, what is true. Truth cannot be covered up, it cannot remain secret. In time, what is hidden will be revealed.
what you hear whispered, proclaim from the housetops.
This sounds like Jesus wants the disciples to be prophets. We know that prophets are those people who sat so still, and listened so carefully, that they heard God speaking. And what they heard, they told all who would listen.
The disciples have listened to Jesus. They have followed him day after day, listening to him speak of the Kingdom of God. Now they are asked to tell what they have heard. They are asked to be prophets. They can feel the waves of Truth splashing at their feet, pulling at their ankles. It is time for them to speak the truth to a world that needs to hear the Good News.
When we are baptized and anointed with the oil that smells like heaven, the Oil of Chrism, the priest says,
remain as a member of Christ, Priest, Prophet and King, unto eternal life (excerpt from the Rite of Baptism)
Like the disciples, we are also asked to be prophets, to help God reveal what is buried. But we do not walk with Jesus everyday listening to him. Do we?
We do listen to the Word of God. Each time we do, those words sink deeper within us. We have listened. We have heard. The Word of God becomes buried inside us. And nothing is buried that will not be revealed.
But how will we know what to say? Are we supposed to memorize the Bible? Is there something to worry about here?
What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered, proclaim from the housetops.
Jesus speaks to us in the dark--this is private prayer. In private he speaks, deep in our hearts, while we sit in stillness, listening.
Jesus whispers to us. If someone whispers something to us, how close must they be? We must be very still, very silent, to hear his whisper.
There is an order here. First Jesus speaks, then we tell. Jesus whispers, then we proclaim. We cannot proclaim what we have not heard.
Then we will reveal to the world the hidden Plan of God. But for now, we pray.