Hosea 8:4-7.11-13
Matthew 9:32-38


In and around Sydney, there are many good fishing spots, especially on the Coast, which is only a few miles from our city. Rock Fishing is enormously popular, and apart from getting some good catches, the area can be extremely dangerous due to the sometimes-uneven height of the waves hitting the shoreline. There are lots of signs up in various languages pointing out the risks of Fishing there, and the need to take care, and never turn one’s back on the sea. However, despite all this Information, many people think that they know better and take reckless risks; many die in the process, or their companions trying to make a rescue perish as well.

There is a parallel here in the first Reading. Hosea says that the Lord God is calling out their stupidity and of pushing aside the Lord God’s Guidelines for authentic and blessed Covenant-life, which has been carefully handed down to them, and replacing it with their small- minded strategies which lead to ruin, and self-centred emptiness.

In the Gospel, we see the same loving compassion as in Hosea’s Words. Evil sees Jesus and is threatened by his loving-kindness. The Pharisees are spiritually deaf and blind in their inability to see and hear the saving hand of God at work in Jesus. This phenomenon continues in our own day: The Faces have changed, but the message remains the same!

Do we use our spiritual GPS to truly focus in on God’s Word and respond? Are we tempted to do it ‘MY WAY’ irrespective of all the signposts and positive Voices from the Lord God, in our Community? Food for thought!

Kevin Walsh is a priest in the Diocese of Parramatta in Sydney. He has been formed in the Passionist tradition and Ministers to the Aged, the Sick, the Dying and the Bereaved.