Tuesday last – June 28 – was the anniversary of my ordination to the priesthood. 2 years down, eternity to go.
I had the 6:30 AM Mass, and I had a rough idea of what I was going to talk about in the homily that day. I was going to maybe say something about Saint Irenaeus, who’s feast it was, and certainly mention my favorite line from that morning’s Gospel” “Why are you terrified, O you of little faith?” Of course, being that it was the early Mass, it wasn’t going to be golden, but it would be something.
In my preparation, however, I had completely overlooked the responsorial psalm. Frankly, I do that often. Oftentimes, they’re hard to preach on – or, more often, the Gospel or first reading is just easier to preach on – and I’m not looking to hit home runs with a daily Mass homily, I’m just looking to get on base.
I guess this time I got hit by the pitch.
There was no lector at that Mass – never is, that early – so I’m doing the proclaiming myself, and I get to this verse:
But I, because of your abundant mercy, will enter your house; I will worship at your holy temple in fear of you, O Lord.
Because of God’s abundant mercy. That’s the how and why I’m a priest. That’s the how and why any of us are anything. And that’s perhaps more worth celebrating than anything else.