Dear candidates, If I give you $50 billion, what would you do with it?….. feed a lot people, buy a house, car, help your parish, private airplane….
Well, you won’t be given money today— but when I put that Chrism oil on your forehead and say “Receive the gift of the Holy Spirit,” at that very moment, you will receive power/ grace/ gift/ a special mission; a mission more valuable than any amount of money anyone can give you; a power and mission that will turn you and others into tools into the hands of the Almighty God; a power and mission no one, nothing can ever take away from you, if you don’t allow them.
You will receive mission from on high like
- St. Jude to give hope to the hopeless and despairing… to preach the good news of Jesus Christ to family and strangers alike.
- Aaron in the Old Testament to be set apart only for the service of God and to offer your life as a pleasing sacrifice to the Lord.
- St. Joseph to respond to Gods call even when you don’t understand everything.
- St. Michael to fight for and defend God when other people say he doesn’t exist or he’s not real.
- St. Catherine of Siena to set the world on fire and to bring peace and unity where there’s division.
- St. Dymphna to stand up with those who suffer mentally, spiritually and marginalized.
- St. Augustus Tolston to shine, to give taste, to love even when you face unjust opposition from those who are supposed to raise you up.
- St. Luke to put Jesus before your job, family and friend and even yourself.
- Josephine Bakhita not to allow your past, and your hurts to define who you can become through the power of forgiveness and healing.
These are the saints you have chosen as your confirmation name. They are stars in the skies of our lives because they lived their God-given mission. Imitating them is recipe for greatness.
These powers, this mission, the grace, the gift you will receive today are not yours to keep; they are given to you to heal, transform, gather and serve others. use them they multiply. Don’t use them you lose them. As simple as that!
As the second reading says, God gives them to you to
- Show compassion to the suffering around you.
- Exercise purity in a world that tries to devalue it.
- Bring hope and positivity in a world devoid of hope.
- Forgive even when someone hurts you.
- Speak up for the right thing.
- Do the right thing even when everyone around you is doing the wrong thing.
- Fight for life from conception to natural death.
- Practice non-violence though violence can be so much easier, to give back to your community.
- Become selfless servants.
- Make your faith the light in your decisions.
- Become a leader in your schools, workplace, and family
- Become involved in church and in society in the name of God, to turn the other cheek.
- Go to confessions often, to give yourself a new start.
- Practice humility, which is the way to the mountaintop.
- Choose joy even when complaining, sarcasm and cynicism are easier.
- Always strive to receive Jesus in a state of grace. Grace makes you better at everything you do.
- Become priests and religious sisters and good married men and women.
- Never stop practicing your faith because that’s.
That’s the potentials you will have in your hands from this day forward.
These gifts, my fellow young friends, are more powerful, most magnificent, more explosive, more sublime than any amount of money anyone can give you. Why? Because
- Money can’t change people’s hearts, these power from on high can.
- Money doesn’t last, these do. money can’t buy you happiness, these can.
- Money can’t solve your issues, these can.
- Money can’t take away your fears and inner insecurities, these can.
- Money can’t give you a holy family, church community and neighborhood, these can.
- Money certainly can’t get you to heaven, these will.
The awesome gifts you will be receiving today can do infinitely more than you can think or imagine, let them be unleashed in you! They are the secret to both a successful Christian and a secular life. Choosing them will bring happiness. Not choosing them will hurt your and a lot of people. Choose well!
So beautiful, Father Brice. Your homily is ever so rich in meaning, not only for the young people who have just received the Sacrament of Confirmation, but — importantly — for all of us who have ever received this wonderful Sacrament. Your
outpouring of words leads one to reflect on the enormous power and responsibility that comes with Confirmation. Thank you very much.