9 August 2017 Eighteenth Week Ordinary Time Year 1 Homily
The land of Canaan was a new and exciting place. There appeared to be both a land “of milk and honey” as well as a land with people “who are fierce.”
The special number forty appears to catch the Lord’s attention and because of their distrust in the Lord after the reconnoitering of forty days the people will “suffer forty years for their crimes.”
The Lord of the Old Testament could indeed be a harsh and punishing with his people.
Jesús meets a Canaanite woman who asks for healing for her daughter.
Jesús does not respond to her in keeping with the tradition of the elders to not engage with a foreign woman.
Jesús mission is “to the lost sheep of Israel”.
The woman persists.
Jesús calls her, indirectly to a “dog”.
The woman challenges Jesús to give at least “the scraps” of spiritual food and healing he has been given.
The woman has “great faith”.
Today we ask for “great faith” to “see” as Jesús “came to see” the fullness and inclusiveness of the Father’s will for the peoples he created.