Homily by Fr. Ihor Holovko on the Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost
September 4, 2023
From September 1, 2023, the Ukrainian Catholic Church in Australia, New Zealand and Oceania completely switched to a new calendar. Sometimes people express themselves in other words, that we changed “our calendar” to the Gregorian one. Or we can hear other interpretations about this historical event.
The first or second, and possibly other statements are not entirely accurate and divert our attention from the Lord Jesus Christ and God’s Kingdom to secondary matters. Our Christian approach to this “transition” should emphasize that we only adapted or clarified the church calendar to the real one in which we live, canceling only one error — in the amount of thirteen days. One of the most important: the path of our salvation from sin to holiness and from death to life remains unchanged. After all, any time norms or chronology do not replace eternity. “Eternity prevails over time, and our whole life is a journey to God” — Jean Vanier.
To remind us that eternal life cannot be replaced by things calculated by time or exchanged for temporary things — the Lord tells a parable that we read on the 14th Sunday after Pentecost. The King makes a wedding feast and invites his friends to share with them his joy, his gifts — his life. Instead, friends are exchanged for everyday and secondary affairs. After all, even what we are very used to cannot be an alternative to the truths and values and happiness of eternal life. The Lord visits his people, calling us people his friends. He was born among us and this means that He shares with us Himself and everything that He possesses. He gives us His life and Resurrection through death on the cross. And what answer do people give to this? We, as His friends and relatives, received an invitation to this Wedding feast long ago in our Baptism. Therefore, in our journey, let’s choose the path to God — the Giver of everything we need. Just as God shares with us eternal life, so we, not clinging to things measured by a calendar or by time frame, but share with Him our gifts, successes and life.