“I Do Not Know Him”

Reflection for the 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time by FAN Board Member, Ms. Carolyn Townes

This reflection was originally posted in our January 9th newsletter


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“As you announce peace with your mouth, make sure that you have greater peace in your hearts.” ~ Saint Francis of Assisi, as quoted in 2017 World Day of Peace Message

In this season of Ordinary Time, there is nothing ordinary about our journey with Jesus. During ordinary time, we pause to get to know Jesus, as the nonviolent Prince of Peace. In this Sunday’s Gospel, John the Baptist, who was ordained from the womb to be the Prophet of the Most High, had to admit “I do not know him.” Of all the people who would have known the coming Messiah, you would think it would be John; who was the greatest born of woman, as Jesus described him.

The festivities are over so we can sit down, breathe and get to know the reason for all our seasons. Jesus came to bring us abundant life, but we must accept and receive this gift of abundant life. How do we get to know Jesus? By listening to him. We don’t know a person if we don’t take the time to listen to him or her. It is in the listening that we learn about the person. We learn about their likes and dislikes; their joys and sorrows; their hopes and dreams. And then, they listen to us. This is how conversation happens and in true conversation, there is conversion – a constant turning and shifting. A turning and shifting towards new ideas and information we learn as we listen. We don’t have to agree with what we are hearing, but we must remain respectful in the listening process. To truly listen to someone is a kind and loving act. This is pivotal to nonviolent living, living like Jesus.

When we read, share and meditate on the Gospels, we get to know Jesus more and more. And if necessary, we ask questions of the Spirit of God for clarity. John the Baptist sent his disciples to ask Jesus was he the one sent from God or should they keep looking. John needed clarity because even he “did not know him.” Just for today, pause, listen and get to know the Lord.

Carolyn D. Townes, OFS
National Animator, Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation
U.S. Secular Franciscan Order
FAN Board Member

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Published in: on January 10, 2017 at 9:37 am  Leave a Comment  

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