12 juillet 2002, mardi de la 15ème semine, année impaire

Ex 2, 1-15; Mt 11, 20-24

Monastère de Kibungo, Rwanda




H o m é l i e


Chères soeurs,


Les textes de cette Eucharistie nous parlent de faiblesse et de puissance – de la faiblesse des hommes et de la puissance de Dieu.  Dans la première lecture, tirée du Livre de l’Exode, nous voyons la faiblesse du peuple juif au sein de l’empire égyptien, en particulier la faiblesse de Moïse encore bébé déposé dans un panier posé sur les eaux du Nil, et la puissance avec laquelle Dieu libérera son peuple d’Égypte par le ministère de Moïse.


            D’habitude Jésus prononce des bénédictions, que nous appelons des « béatitudes » (Bienheureux les pauvres, bienheureux les doux, bienheureux les artisans de paix, etc.) Dans le bref texte d’Évangile que nous venons d’entendre, Jésus prononce non pas des bénédictions mais des malédictions : « Malheureuse es-tu, Chorazin ! Malheureuse es-tu, Bethsaïda... etc.)  Quelle est l’attitude qui provoque une telle réaction chez Jésus.  Il s’agit de l’aveuglement et plus précisément de l’aveuglement volontaire, qui refuse de voir ce qui est évident. 


            Il s’agit de deux villes de Galilée où Jésus avait opéré de nombreux miracles et fait des guérisons.  Les gens de la ville ont évidemment profité de ces miracles et de ces guérisons, mais ils n’ont pas reçu le message de Jésus appelant à la conversion.  C’est qu’ils n’ont pas su interpréter ce qui se passait.  Ils auraient dû reconnaître que celui qui opérait de tels signes venait de Dieu et que sa Parole devait donc être reçue comme Parole de Dieu.  Et s’ils n’ont pas analysé les événements pour en percevoir le sens, c’était sans doute parce qu’ils ne se sentaient pas capables d’en accepter les conséquences.


            À nous aussi Dieu parle à travers les personnes et les événements.  Souvent nous préférons ne pas écouter de peur d’entendre un message qui nous dérange trop.  Évidemment si un ange du ciel nous apparaissait pour nous indiquer la volonté de Dieu sur nous, nous l’écouterions et nous lui obéirions.  Mais Dieu nous parle ordinairement à travers les événements de tous les jours.  Si nous omettons souvent de faire l’effort d’analyser et d’interpréter ces événements, c’est probablement que nous percevons plus ou moins inconsciemment qu’ils peuvent comporter pour nous un message trop dérangeant.  Ce qui nous manque la plupart du temps, ce n’est pas la foi ; c’est le courage d’opérer la conversion requise par notre foi.


            Demandons la grâce de l’écoute et du discernement et le courage de mettre en pratique ce que nous aurons perçu.


            Year I

READING I    Ex 2, 1-15


A reading from the book of Exodus

He was called by the name Moses because he was taken from the water. Afterwards he grew up to lead his brothers.

A certain man of the house of Levi married a Levite woman, who conceived and bore a son. Seeing that he was a goodly child, she hid him for three months. When she could hide him no longer, she took a papyrus basket, daubed it with bitumen and pitch, and putting the child in it, placed it among the reeds on the river bank. His sister stationed herself at a distance to find out what would happen to him.

Pharaoh's daughter came down to the river to bathe, while her maids walked along the river bank. Noticing the basket among the reeds, she sent her handmaid to fetch it. On opening it, she looked and lo, there was a baby boy, crying! She was moved with pity for him and said, "It is one of the Hebrews' children." Then his sister asked Pharaoh's daughter, "Shall I go and call one of the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?" "Yes, do so," she answered. So the maiden went and called the child's own mother. Pharaoh's daughter said to her, "Take this child and nurse it for me, and I will repay you." The woman therefore took the child and nursed it. When the child grew, she brought him to Pharaoh's daughter, who adopted him as her son and called him Moses; for she said, "I drew him out of the water."

On one occasion, after Moses had grown up, when he visited his kinsmen and witnessed their forced labor, he saw an Egyptian striking a Hebrew, one of his own kinsmen. Looking about and seeing no one, he slew the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. The next day he went out again, and now two Hebrews were fighting! So he asked the culprit, "Why are you striking your fellow Hebrew?" But he replied, "Who has appointed you ruler and judge over us? Are you thinking of killing me as you killed the Egyptian?" Then Moses became afraid and thought, "The affair must certainly be known."

Pharaoh, too, heard of the affair and sought to put him to death. But Moses fled from him and stayed in the land of Midian.

The Word of the Lord.


Responsorial Psalm

Ps 69, 3. 14. 30-31. 33-34


R. (33) Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.

I am sunk in the abysmal swamp

where there is no foothold;

I have reached the watery depths;

the flood overwhelms me.

R. Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.

But I pray to you, O Lord,

for the time of your favor, O God!

In your great kindness answer me

with your constant help.

R. Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.

But I am afflicted and in pain;

let your saving help, O God, protect me.

I will praise the name of God in song,

and I will glorify him with thanksgiving;

R. Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.

See, you lowly ones, and be glad;

you who seek God, may your hearts be merry!

For the Lord hears the poor,

and his own who are in bonds he spurns not.

R. Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.



            Year II

READING I    Is 7, 1-9


A reading from the book of the prophet Isaiah

If you do not stand by me, you will perish.

In the days of Ahaz, king of Judah, son of Jotham, son of Uzziah, Rezin, king of Aram, and Pekah, king of Israel, son of Remaliah, went up to attack Jerusalem, but they were not able to conquer it. When word came to the house of David that Aram was encamped in Ephraim, the heart of the king and the heart of the people trembled, as the trees of the forest tremble in the wind.

Then the Lord said to Isaiah: Go out to meet Ahaz, you and your son Shear-jashub, at the end of the conduit of the upper pool, on the highway of the fuller's field, and say to him: Take care you remain tranquil and do not fear; let not your courage fail before these two stumps of smoldering brands [the blazing anger of Rezin and the Arameans, and of the son of Remaliah], because of the mischief that Aram [Ephraim and the son of Remaliah] plots against you, saying, "Let us go up and tear Judah asunder, make it our own by force, and appoint the son of Tabeel king there."

Thus says the Lord:

This shall not stand, it shall not be!

Damascus is the capital of Aram,

and Rezin the head of Damascus;

Samaria is the capital of Ephraim,

and Remaliah's son the head of Samaria,

But within sixty years and five,

Ephraim shall be crushed, no longer a nation.

Unless your faith is firm

you shall not be firm!

The Word of the Lord.


Responsorial Psalm

Ps 48, 2-3. 3-4. 5-6. 7-8


R. (9) God upholds his city for ever.

Great is the Lord and wholly to be praised

in the city of our God.

His holy mountain, fairest of heights,

is the joy of all the earth.

R. God upholds his city for ever.

Mount Zion, "the recesses of the North,"

is the city of the great King.

God is with her castles;

renowned is he as a stronghold.

R. God upholds his city for ever.

For lo! the kings assemble,

they come on together;

They also see, and at once are stunned,

terrified, routed.

R. God upholds his city for ever.

Quaking seizes them there;

anguish, like a woman's in labor,

As though a wind from the east

were shattering ships of Tarshish.

R. God upholds his city for ever.



            Years I and II

GOSPEL       Mt 11, 20-24



See no. 509.


+ A reading from the holy gospel according to Matthew

It will not go as hard with Tyre and Sidon and the land of

Sodom on Judgment Day as with you.

Jesus began to reproach the towns where most of his miracles had been worked, with their failure to reform: "It will go ill with you, Chorazin! And just as ill with you, Bethsaida! If the miracles worked in you had taken place in Tyre and Sidon, they would have reformed in sackcloth and ashes long ago. I assure you, it will go easier for Tyre and Sidon than for you on the day of judgment. As for you, Capernaum,

'Are you to be exalted to the skies?

You shall go down to the realm of death!'

If the miracles worked in you had taken place in Sodom, it would be standing today. I assure you, it will go easier for Sodom than for you on the day of judgment."

The gospel of the Lord.






            Year I

READING I    Ex 3, 1-6. 9-12



Text from :: Lectionary for Mass

Lectionary for Mass, Copyright © 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine; © 1969, International Committee on English in the Liturgy, Inc. All rights reserved.