Rejection of Jesus Christ in Nazareth  

One might think that Jesus could have been more politically correct and said things that would have pleased the people and made them feel good. Instead, Jesus chose to say things that they didn’t like to hear. He exposed what was in their hearts and made them feel uncomfortable and very angry; even to the point that they wanted to throw Him off a cliff.

The reception given to Jesus by the people of his home town changed from curiosity and enthusiasm to hostility and violence. They felt that Jesus had not been doing enough healings and other miracles in Nazareth. They wanted Jesus to prove Himself and to perform miracles for them. What they got instead from Jesus were stories from the Old Testament about prophets who used their healing powers to cure foreigners.

The anger of the people in Nazareth resulted from their mistaken notions of how God should or must act. They failed to understand Jesus’ message that God’s love is for all peoples. They acted like the people of the Old Testament who rejected God’s message which was brought to them by the prophets Elijah and Elisha. They didn’t want to be reminded that they had strayed far from God. They didn’t want to be reminded that God’s ways are not the same as the ways of the world.

Today, we have access to so many things that make our life easy; things that we have gotten so used to, such that not having them, even for a day, would be a great inconvenience. Perhaps we have assured ourselves that being a good Christian should be just as easy and convenient. Perhaps we need to be reminded that Christ Himself has said that we should “enter through the narrow gate, for the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction; and those who enter through it are many. How narrow the gate and constricted the road that leads to life. And those who find it are few! (Mt7:13-14; Lk13:24)”

Please welcome Ms. Chih-Li Ying and Ms. Yvonne Chow who presented a seminar on evangelization yesterday. The main theme for this seminar is “Celebrate Chinese New Year with the Lord.” The seminar continues today after the morning Mass at 12:30 pm. All are invited to attend.

St. Blaise was a renowned doctor in Armenia. He was later chosen to be a bishop and became known as a spiritual healer. Because of his holiness, people came and asked him to heal their body and mind. In 316 AD, the government ordered the execution of Christians. According to legend, while St. Blaise was being taken to prison, a mother with her son who had fish bones caught in his throat and was about to die, begged St. Blaise to heal him. When the mother placed her son at the feet of the saint, the child healed immediately. However, St. Blaise was taken to prison and martyred. Because of this legend, many people with throat illnesses ask for the prayer of St. Blaise. He became the patron saint of the throat patients. In the Middle Ages, his fame spread throughout Europe. His main shrine is now in the church named after him in Croatia. In commemoration of the Feast day of St. Blaise, Fr. Bill will give the blessing of throats after Mass. In addition, the Anointing of the Sick will be ministered in the chapel for parishioners whose health is seriously impaired by illness or old age.

Students from Notre Dame Academy is having another bake sale after morning Mass today. The purpose of this bake sale is to benefit the Aflac Cancer Center. They will be selling packaged snacks, cookies, banana bread, etc. Please buy a snack or two.

The next Pastoral Council and Finance Council meeting will be next Sunday, February 10. Pastoral Council meets at 12:30 pm and Finance Council meets at 1:30 pm.