Memorial of St. Irenaeus

Theme: The wind and sea obey him

Today the church celebrates the memorial of St. Irenaeus, Bishop and Martyr. St. Irenaeus was a man of great faith, who stood on the side of the church against heresy that was fighting the church at the time. He remained steadfast in his faith until he was killed. He continued to teach the doctrines of the faith without fear, until he made the supreme sacrifice with his blood. Each time we celebrate our Ancestors in faith, it gives us an opportunity for us to reflect on the quality of our discipleship; what are we willing to give up because of our faith in God. Our faith in God is put to test at different times in our life, and when that happens what do we do? At such moments, do we remain steadfast like the Saint we are celebrating today or we get frightened like the disciples of Jesus in today’s gospel?

However, the action of the disciples of Jesus in today’s gospel shows that even though they were afraid, they were certain that Jesus had the solution that they seek; and they went to him with faith. Jesus did not disappoint them because He commanded the sea and there was calm. My brothers and sisters in Christ, it is the same Christ that we serve as our God; do you also believe like the Disciples of Christ that he has all the answers to situations in our life that we seek? Kindly take that wind in your life that is scary to Jesus, like his disciples did in today’s gospel, and see him restore peace and calm to your troubled situation. He has the power to change the narrative of our life, if only we will come to him in confidence like the disciples did in today’s gospel.

My brothers and sisters in Christ, Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. All we need is to trust in him and give him a chance in our life. When we luck out Jesus in our own life, it will be at our detriment. We all need him in our life, give him a place in your life and he will show you that he is God. Our faithfulness has to transcend that of the Israelites in today’s 1st reading, who were constantly unfaithful to the covenant they entered into with God. Now is the time for us to retrace our steps and show that we truly have faith in trust in the God we serve. Let us make that bold step today like the Disciples of Christ, and experience the loving mercy of God. As you do this, may almighty God bless you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Peace be with you.

Homily for the memorial of St. Irenaeus, by Fr. Jude Ifeanyi Ifezime, C.S.Sp