Sunday, February 07, 2010

Deep Water

The Gospel passage proclaimed at Mass today finds Jesus and his apostles on Lake Gennesaret.

The account from the Luke Chapter 5 states that, prior to the miraculous catch that day, Jesus encourages the doubtful fishermen to lower their nets into "deep water."

Here in New York, it's not unusual for me to find myself speaking about matters of faith with people who are not religious or spiritual -- and sometimes even hostile to religious belief. These conversations most often arise in secular settings when I mention my gig.

I suppose this is my "deep water."

It can be intimidating to go to that part of the lake -- the spot from which it is most difficult to return to dry ground.

Navigating old hurts and misconceptions about the Church can be challenging in these conversations about developing a healthy spirituality and prayer life.

But, if I claim the name Christian, it's important not to fear these conversations (or avoid them altogether). As Jesus states near the end of the passage, "Do not be afraid ... "

Deacon Greg has another excellent homily on today's Gospel. One take-away:

A teacher of mine used to have a favorite saying: "A harbor is a great place for a boat, but it's not what it was built for." I think about that a lot in my own life.

We were built to be out there, with the waves and the water and the wind. We are meant to leave the shore.

Flashback: 2007

The image above is "The Miraculous Draught of Fishes" or "La pĂȘche miraculeuse" by James Tissot. It is owned by the Brooklyn Museum of Art.

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