Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
June 26, 2022
Every now and again, after the Creed, when the Prayers of the Faithful have been completed, the Cantor will introduce a hymn to be sung during the Presentation of Gifts, that blends just perfectly with the Readings and Homily.
When that happens, the message is reinforced…driven home…maybe even expanded on. As a result, our song is not only part of our worship but it also takes on a transformative power that enables us to make a deeper commitment to the Gospel.
I, for one, will find myself “humming” that kind of “transformative song” over and over again. The tune becomes the background music for my day. I can’t get the song out of my mind…and with every “replay” The Word of the Lord sinks deeper into my heart. Who hasn’t come out of Christmas Mass singing Silent Night…over and over and over…continuing to imagine a cold, star filled night sky over the little town of Bethlehem?
When I sat down to reflect on this week’s Readings, a song came to my mind, and has continued to “replay” …over and over and over. I can’t seem to shake it.
No Roman Catholic Liturgist or Music Minister would ever consider using this song during Mass. It is secular not sacred music. Even though it hit the charts way back in 1970, it might even be familiar to young people today, because it has been sung by other artist than singer/song writer Carole King. The title is: Where You Lead, I Will Follow.
Loving you the way I do
I only wanna be with you
And I would go to the ends of the earth
Cause darling, to me that’s what you’re worth
Where you lead, I will follow
Anywhere that you tell me to
If you need, you need me to be with you
I will follow where you lead.
It might be secular music, that arguably does not BELONG in Church. But these lyrics…at least for me…drive home the message in today’s Readings. These secular words have TRANSFORMATIVE POWER. The song, although not one of “Glory and Praise” reinforces, and expands on the four-pronged lesson that Jesus taught on His way to His Passion and death.
The Lord NEEDS US TO FOLLOW.
Christ’s needs us to follow Him through His Passion and death, through the Garden Tomb and finally into the Eternal Kingdom. Because, HE NEEDS US TO BE WITH HIM, The Holy Spirit awakens in our hearts a deep love for our God, which certainly inspires us to FOLLOW WHERE JESUS LEADS. In this Gospel passage The Lord tells us where and how to follow.
We are called to follow Him past those who reject, or ridicule or persecute us.
We are called to follow Him with trusting hearts; doing our best to give over control of the details to Him.
We are called to follow Him with a sense of urgency that requires us to act immediately.
We are called to follow Him without reservations…giving our relationship with Christ priority over all else.
And if we follow Him as He teaches us in this Gospel, we will be TRANSFORMED every step of the journey until we arrive in the Kingdom…where our TRANSFORMATION will be complete….and we will be like Christ for all Eternity.
Dig up your old vinyl copy of Carole King’s Tapestry album…or if you are too young for that…click onto You Tube…and listen to this powerful song. Just see if it doesn’t become the background music for your day. I bet it will help drive today’s Readings deeper into your mind and your heart.
It just might help to transform you into an even better disciple.
Where you lead, I will follow
Anywhere that you tell me to!