Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time

The ancients had a healthy respect for the sea and for storms out on the sea, they saw the sea as one of the most powerful force in the world. They also saw the sea as a source of beauty. Life itself comes from the sea. Food came from the sea. Peace and serenity come from looking at the sea[1].

Even though it was such a powerful force, the ancients knew that God could control the sea. In the Book of Job, Job’s pains lead him to question God's wisdom and power. God challenges Job with the simple statement found in the first reading for this Sunday: I closed up the sea. God has even more power than the sea.

The fear of a storm at sea was too much for Jesus' disciples in the today’s Gospel reading. Many of them were fishermen. They were terrorized when they saw the storm coming. When Jesus quieted the sea and the winds, they recognized the power of God working through him. Their question: Who is this that calms the storm and the winds? Was similar to asking, who is the King of Glory? First, though, their faith was tried. Remember, when the storm first came up, Jesus was asleep in the boat. It seemed as though He was not concerned with their plight. It seemed that they had to ride out this storm alone.

The fear that the disciples had is the exact fear that we all have when we are confronted with a crisis. We find out that we have a serious illness. We realize that our marriage is in jeopardy. We learn a terrible truth about one of our relatives or friends. God, who is closer to each of us than our skins, knows our plight and challenges us as Jesus challenged his disciples, Why are you afraid? Where is you faith? It is then that we realize that our all loving god is also an all powerful God. He will calm the sea for us if we trust in him. God does not forget us, even if we think he is sleeping.

Yes, when it rains it pours, but, the King of Glory is in control. Today we pray for faith whenever we are thrown into turmoil ■

[1] Sunday 21st June, 2009, 12th Sunday Ordinary Time. Readings: Job 38:1, 8-11. Give thanks to the Lord, his love is everlasting—Ps 106(107):23-26, 28-31. 2 Corinthians 5:14-17. Mark 4:35-41 [St Aloysius Gonzaga].
Ilustration: Jan Brueghel the Elder, Christ in the Storm on the Sea of Galilee (c. 1596), Oil on copper, 27 x 35 cm, Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza (Madrid).

Y entonces uno se queda con la Iglesia, que me ofrece lo único que debe ofrecerme la Iglesia: el conocimiento de que ya estamos salvados –porque esa es la primera misión de la Iglesia, el anunciar la salvación gracias a Jesucristo- y el camino para alcanzar la alegría, pero sin exclusividades de buen pastor, a través de esa maravilla que es la confesión y los sacramentos. La Iglesia, sin partecitas.

laus deo virginique matris