Time for prophets, by Sr. Marie Lucey

July 3, 2018
On the 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time, when the times are anything but “ordinary,” the scripture readings draw attention to prophets. Prophets with a capital P come to mind: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezechiel and other Hebrew Prophets; John the Baptist; Jesus himself who, pained at the lack of acceptance in his hometown, declares “A prophet is not without honor except in his native place….”
God raises up prophets in times of crisis. Their mission is not to predict the future but to remind the people, especially those who govern, that God is present in the political and social crises of the time and demand that policies and laws must be in accordance with God’s will and desires. “Thy kingdom come, they will be done on earth as it is in heaven,” we pray so often in the prayer that Jesus gave us. If we pray these words sincerely, can we possibly see God’s will in the separation and detention of immigrant families, in tearing children away from their parents, closing doors to refugees, declaring “not wanted here” to people from majority Muslim countries, enacting legislation to cut food stamps and harm God’s creation while bloating the military budget?

So, where are today’s prophets? There are many lower case “p” prophets if we see with God’s eyes, and they may include the face in your mirror. Prophets in every age, no matter what the historical crisis, share two things in common: they speak truth to power, reminding the community that God’s desires prevail over political expediency, and they suffer. If I hesitate because I am too small, too weak, to speak with a prophetic voice, I can pray with Paul: “Therefore, I am content with weakness, insults, hardships, persecutions, and constraints, for the sake of Christ; for when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Sr. Marie Lucey, OSF
FAN Associate Director

Suggested Action:
“One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it.” – Clarissa Pinkola Estes
Consider the ways in which you are, or can be, a small “p” prophet.  Believe that you are strong in Jesus Christ.

Suggested Petitions:
With gratitude for today’s prophets and martyrs, especially Archbishop Oscar Romero who will be canonized in October, let us pray. . .
That we may accept the challenge to speak with a prophetic voice in this very disturbing time, let us pray. . .

God of justice, open our eyes to see you in the face of the poor.
Open our ears to hear you in the cries of the exploited.
Open our mouths to defend you in the public square.
Remind us that what we do to the least ones, we do to you.  

Amen.