Valley Center, CA
December 6, 2022
Partly cloudy
Partly cloudy
46°F
 

ST. STEPHEN CATHOLIC CHURCH

12th Sunday of Ordinary Time Cycle B 6-20-21
“The Impossible” is a movie about a family which was vacationing on December 24, 2004, when the Indian Ocean tsunami struck land and is considered the deadliest tsunami in recorded history. A 200 foot wave ripped through 14 countries sweeping away entire towns and claiming over 200,000 lives. Although the movie changes the names and ethnic origins of the family, the actual story of Bennet or Álvarez-Belón family is no less amazing. After surviving the monstrous deadly wave and being separated, they were reunited a few days later. Their experience with the great power of nature and the kindness of strangers brought about a happy ending which has changed their lives.
In a similar way, the apostles were faced with a quick and sudden storm while Jesus slept. They respond in fear crying out to Jesus “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” Likewise, I am sure that the Álvarez-Belón family felt similarly desperate while they were being tossed about under the tsunami wave. Without belittling the apostles, great disasters happen to us either by our own fault or from some great external force. When the storm pounds through, we are often powerless feeling as though Christ is asleep and unresponsive to our plight.
Here is the thing, would it have been so bad if the boat would have capsized and the apostles drown? Eventually, we all die; however, dying with Jesus the Son of God would be a good way to go. Jesus shows his divine power by calming the storm; but, criticizes the apostles for being terrified. “Whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s” (Rom. 14:8). Trusting in Christ whether we are in the midst of disaster, joyous times, or at death is the faith of a Christian. For the Álvarez- Belón family they were blessed with a reunion and life; whereas many others died due to the Indian Ocean tsunami. Generally, we all face great challenges and overwhelming situations of apocalyptic stress as symbolized by a “violent squall” catching us off guard; but, Jesus wishes to free us from the terrors of any disaster: fear of diseases such as heart failure, cancer, AIDS, or COVID-19; anxiety about an uncertain financial future of finding a job, being laid-off, or rising inflation; instability in the family with marital difficulties, concern for your children, substance addiction, or digital addiction; or pangs of loneliness, isolation, and the prospect of death itself.
Remember, we are catholic who unlike the apostles had Jesus in the boat; we have Jesus in our souls and body through the frequent reception of the Him in the Eucharist. No matter if we are facing a tsunami, on a sinking boat, or dealing stress and failure; we will face it all with the Son of God dwelling within us.
Fr Luke Jauregui

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