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Caution: Putting a Sunday homily on the Website is tricky business. All the viewer has is a written text. A homily, on the other hand, is "an oral event". It may not have been said or heard the way it was written. In addition, a roughly ten-minute homily is part of a roughly one-hour worship event in which God and God's people communicate with each other by means of ritual, symbol, song, proclamation, prayer. Not everything in these homilies is original. As a homilist, I rely on and at times borrow from other homilists and writers who are not properly mentioned in this format. I am often indebted to them.

Father William Marrevee, s.c.j.

2nd Sunday of Lent Year B

Abraham: his is an incredible faith story; he defines what it means to have faith in God; a life lived under the power of faith.

It begins with a call from God, a promise from God, a commitment from God. This dominates the story. Abraham is called to cling to that promise from God, against incredible odds. God has given Abraham his word. Does Abraham trust God’s word?

There are three stages to Abraham’s faith story:

  1. his leaving his country, stripping himself from his past; all on God’s promise.

  2. then there is the promise that “in his seed and offspring all the races of the world would be blessed.” But how? Abraham and Sarah are getting older, way beyond child-bearing ages. Despite all the odds, the impossible happened. They receive the child of the promise: Isaac.

  3. The Abraham is told to sacrifice his son. An incomprehensible order. How is the promise to be fulfilled? Abraham still believes in the promise. The way the story unfolds shows that God does not want the death of Isaac. What God wants is Abraham as a man of faith.

Once that faith of Abraham is thoroughly tested, God can indeed start a new people, a people grounded in faith. And of this faith we are the offspring. As believers we are the children of Abraham.

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