In today’s Gospel, I see two key take-aways from the words of Zechariah, father of John the Baptist:
One is a reminder that the promise of the Lord that he “that he would save us from our enemies and from the hands of all who hate us” applies to all his people – and that most certainly includes those of us who experience hatred and discrimination in church, allegedly but spuriously in the Lord’s own name.
Another is implied in Zechariah’s words to his son, the instruction to “prepare a way for the Lord”. He is speaking here directly to his son, John the Baptist, but the words are equally applicable to all of us. It is not enough simply to wait passively for the Kingdom of God: it is incumbent on all of us to prepare the way in our own communities, spreading the word that the Kingdom applies to all, excluding none:.
John’s father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke this prophecy:‘Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israelfor he has visited his people, he has come to their rescueand he has raised up for us a power for salvationin the House of his servant David,even as he proclaimed,by the mouth of his holy prophets from ancient times,that he would save us from our enemiesand from the hands of all who hate us.Thus he shows mercy to our ancestors,thus he remembers his holy covenantthe oath he sworeto our father Abrahamthat he would grant us, free from fear,to be delivered from the hands of our enemies,to serve him in holiness and virtuein his presence, all our days.And you, little child,you shall be called Prophet of the Most High,for you will go before the Lordto prepare the way for him,to give his people knowledge of salvationthrough the forgiveness of their sins;this by the tender mercy of our Godwho from on high will bring the rising Sun to visit us,to give light to those who livein darkness and the shadow of deathand to guide our feetinto the way of peace.’
via Universalis: Mass.
(Cross – posted at Queering the Church)