The Faith to Build and Enter the Ark with St. John Paul II, Sixth Tuesday (I), February 17, 2015

Fr. Roger J. Landry
St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican, Altar of St. John Paul II
Tuesday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time, Year I
February 17, 2015
Gen 6:5-8.7:1-5.10, Ps 29, Mk 8:14-21










To listen to an audio recording of today’s homily, please click below:


The following points were attempted in the homily:

[to be elaborated later]

  • Account of the flood. New creation. People had sinned. God would make a new covenant. Jesus whom we see in the gospel was the fulfillment of Moses. We’re launching into the 40 days of lent tomorrow. God wants to rain down his graces. Let’s learn the lessons he wants to impart.
  • First is faith. Building the ark. Crazy. Yet he did it. Jesus points to power of faith in the gospel. Beware bad leaven. Hypocrisy. Faking it. Feigning faith. We see what he did with very little. He wants us to believe. Power of a mustard seed to move mountains. A few loaves and fish to feed many. A little bread and wine at the last supper. 12 nobodies. Some water in some jugs at a wedding. We know what Jesus can do. So to lent. Ashes. Practices. On the surface doesn’t seem like much but God can and wants to do much through these work.
  • Second we need to enter the ark. Early saints looked at the church as an ark. Nave. Peters boat. Various images of storms at sea. It’s a chance to increase our faith. In the boat with Jesus and others. Pilgrimage together. Seek to bring others into the ark.
    Jpii. Faith. Inspired people in storms of nazi and commie occupation. Witness to hope. Consecration of world to Mary could bring it down. In the midst of isms watering things down he asked us to build our whole lives on Christ not to be afraid to open the doors. Called us to sanctity. One important way was marriage. Pairs in Noah’s ark. 2 by 2 in gospel. Marriage. One holy marriage can do so little. Nazareth. His own parents. Couples he raised to the altars. Analogy of human love.
  • Faith in power of the Mass. Seems insignificant but this is the altar of the cosmos. Eucharistic amazement. This is where we gain confidence because Christ is with us in the ark. We don’t fear the storms. We launch out into lent cleaning out the lord leaven of worldliness and let the leaven of the Holy Spirit lift us up. Do you still not understand? The lord wants to work a great miracle in us!

The readings for today’s Mass were:

Reading 1 Gn 6:5-8; 7:1-5, 10

When the LORD saw how great was man’s wickedness on earth,
and how no desire that his heart conceived
was ever anything but evil,
he regretted that he had made man on the earth,
and his heart was grieved.So the LORD said:
“I will wipe out from the earth the men whom I have created,
and not only the men,
but also the beasts and the creeping things and the birds of the air,
for I am sorry that I made them.”
But Noah found favor with the LORD.Then the LORD said to Noah:
“Go into the ark, you and all your household,
for you alone in this age have I found to be truly just.
Of every clean animal, take with you seven pairs,
a male and its mate;
and of the unclean animals, one pair,
a male and its mate;
likewise, of every clean bird of the air, seven pairs,
a male and a female,
and of all the unclean birds, one pair,
a male and a female.
Thus you will keep their issue alive over all the earth.
Seven days from now I will bring rain down on the earth
for forty days and forty nights,
and so I will wipe out from the surface of the earth
every moving creature that I have made.”
Noah did just as the LORD had commanded him.

As soon as the seven days were over,
the waters of the flood came upon the earth.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 29:1a and 2, 3ac-4, 3b and 9c-10

R. (11b) The Lord will bless his people with peace.
Give to the LORD, you sons of God,
give to the LORD glory and praise,
Give to the LORD the glory due his name;
adore the LORD in holy attire.
R. The Lord will bless his people with peace.
The voice of the LORD is over the waters,
the LORD, over vast waters.
The voice of the LORD is mighty;
the voice of the LORD is majestic.
R. The Lord will bless his people with peace.
The God of glory thunders,
and in his temple all say, “Glory!”
The LORD is enthroned above the flood;
the LORD is enthroned as king forever.
R. The Lord will bless his people with peace.

Alleluia Jn 14:23

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Whoever loves me will keep my word, says the Lord;
and my Father will love him
and we will come to him.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Mk 8:14-21

The disciples had forgotten to bring bread,
and they had only one loaf with them in the boat.
Jesus enjoined them, “Watch out,
guard against the leaven of the Pharisees
and the leaven of Herod.”
They concluded among themselves that
it was because they had no bread.
When he became aware of this he said to them,
“Why do you conclude that it is because you have no bread?
Do you not yet understand or comprehend?
Are your hearts hardened?
Do you have eyes and not see, ears and not hear?
And do you not remember,
when I broke the five loaves for the five thousand,
how many wicker baskets full of fragments you picked up?”
They answered him, “Twelve.”
“When I broke the seven loaves for the four thousand,
how many full baskets of fragments did you pick up?”
They answered him, “Seven.”
He said to them, “Do you still not understand?”