..feast today of two of Our Lords early disciples..St Peter & St Paul.. Jesus chose them for two very different jobs; Peter to be the keyholder of the Church..to look after people who already believed in God & to help them to get to know God better & to deepen their love for him & for each other ..he looked after the home team..you often see St Peter holding a key.. ..& then Jesus chose St Paul for a different task ..his job was to go out from the Church & its beautiful buildings out into the countryside to tell people who had never heard of God or who had heard only little bits about him, to tell them the very good news that God loves them..& wants them to join rest of his followers..so the away team can meet the home team.. ..St Paul would have been seen with a map to find his way around..& whereas your Dads car might have a satnav in which a strange voice barks out instructions to him to turn left or right, if we listen carefully in our heart Jesus talks to us gently lovingly with good advice on the direction he wants us to travel & enjoy..
..for times we have misused a key to lock someone out of our heart.. ; Lord have mercy ..for the times we have listened to the wrong voice & found ourselves lost & afraid.. ; Christ have mercy ..for the times we have not thanked Jesus for always always welcoming us into his life & his heart.. ; Lord have mercy May Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins & bring us to everlasting life. Amen.
..share with you a little poem..story of a boy about your age who could be in your class..we don’t know his name so he could be anyone..
he always wanted to explain things, but no one cared..so he drew sometimes he just drew & it wasn’t anything he wanted to carve it in stone or write it in the sky he would lie out on the grass & look up in the sky & it would be only the sky & the things inside him that needed saying..
& it was after that that he drew the picture it was a beautiful picture he kept it under his pillow & would let no one see it & he would look at it every night & think about it & when it was dark & his eyes were closed, he could see it still & it was all of him & he loved it..
..when he started school he brought it with him not to show anyone but just to have it with him like a friend it was funny about the school he sat in a square brown desk like all the other square brown desks & he thought it would be red & his room was a square brown room like all the other rooms & it was tight & close & stiff..
he hated to hold the pencil & the chalk, with his arm stiff & his feet flat on the floor, stiff with the teacher watching & watching..
the teacher came & spoke to him she told him to wear a tie like all the other boys he said he didn’t like them..& she said that didn’t matter
after that they drew & he drew all yellow & it was the way he felt about the morning & it was beautiful..
the teacher came & smiled at him “what’s this?” she said “why don’t you draw something like Ken’s drawing?” “..isn’t Ken’s drawing beautiful?” after that his mother bought him a tie & he always drew aeroplances rocket ships & volcanoes like everyone else..
..what do you think he wanted to be ?..he wanted to be different, to be himself..today we remember the two disciples of Jesus who were so different..loved needed equally ; Jesus has no favourites..he loves us all equally & he loves our differences..we each bring something special & different to our own family life, to our school, to our class & to our Church family..even our twins in Mrs Andrews class, Elizabeth & Olivia Bellamy, are different..one is 3mins older than the other.. ..one day last week I met Mrs Wilson & little Effie as they were walking home from taking Arthur to school..Effie was so so excited ..she was on her pink bicycle & had some very good news to tell me..that very morning she had begun to ride her bike without the stabilisers on it..she proudly showed me how to set off..she told me her Daddy had shown her to put the right pedal up, to press down on it, and at the same time take up her left foot off the ground & onto the other pedal..& no sooner had she explained it she set off full of joy & excitement..& now her Mummy has to almost run to keep up with her!.. her story her adventure is like our story & adventure..so many people at home in school & in frienships have shown us not just to ride a bike but how to become a friend of Jesus..how to pray, how to speak to him, to listen to him & gradually to realise how much he loves us..how to learn to see him in other people, especially those in need & in those with a happiness to share..like Effie on her bike, lots of good people help us to learn about Jesus; they are our stabilisers, so that when we are about to fall off, they keep us safe, & prevent us from injuring ourselves..& then, when we begin to grow, & eventually we are old enough to try to go it more on our own without the stabilisers..to ride out from here into the village & beyond, to learn even more about ourselves & our difference..& when we get too adventurous & fall off, which we all [ grown ups & young people ] do now & again, when we make mistakes, hurt ourselves & others, we know there will always be good people in family, in friendships, in school & here in Church, to put the stabilisers back on again for a few days or weeks until our grazed knee, our cut elbow or our broken heart has time to heal & mend..& then when we have recovered, we can go out again, like Effie, without the stabilisers to the next adventure & the next chapter in our story.. ..there will always be a St Peter close to home for you, & always a St Paul to show you the right direction to go & to grow in.. ..& remember you are loved, specially loved, because you are different..
[ Parish & School Mass on feast of St Peter & St Paul 29 June 2017 Mt 16;13-19]