The WORD in other words (2022) by Frater Ronie Pinca SVD – Divine Word Seminary Tagaytay
Tuesday 25th Week in Ordinary Time
Since I entered the seminary, I find it hard to go home for the important occasions of our family, not because I do not miss and value my loved ones, but there is a greater call of love to which I am already committed to.
That seems also the tension of the Gospel reading today. Jesus’ act of being dismissive of his very own family appears to be blatantly harsh. It seems to portray an attitude of ungratefulness to the very people he grew up with, the same people who loved and cared for him, especially his mother. But that is not simply the case.
The action of Jesus was not an occasion to humiliate his mother. In fact, it is an affirmation that the very same mother, brothers, and sisters are the ones “who hear the word of God and act on it.” They are the very same people whose love goes beyond blood ties, whose love sets aside differences, and whose love does not exclude but includes. Most importantly, they are the very same people whose love is not simply family-centered and self-referential but a love that is God-centered.
Jesus’ statement was not an issue to his own family, especially Mary. These people knew very well the mission of Jesus. Their apparent silence was a manifestation that they knew and understood the true meaning of love that Jesus was trying to proclaim.
This is also one consolation in my vocation. My family does not only understand my absence in family affairs because I am in a mission assignment and under formation, but they too must share in the call to “hear the word of God and act on it.”