Fr. Troncale was our fill-in priest yesterday. I must say he was a breath of fresh air. He wanted to sing all of the verses of the opening song. He was friendly, inviting but serious. And he homily was both easy to follow while reaching deep.

Yeah — about that. He focused on the aspect of “prophets” in the readings: Speak God’s truth, with love, to others. Oh, and a prophet gets a prophet’s reward. Me? I’m not sure I’m interested in a prophet’s reward. They get abused. Did you notice I tried to push that away by saying “they”?

He reminded folks that when we are baptized we are baptized as priest, prophet and servant king. Dang! Priest, that’s kind of okay since that evokes the notion of going to church and taking part in a worship service. Prophet is a bit more difficult since that is a call to speak often uncomfortable truth in a loving manner. Servant king is hard as well since I’m sure that “king” doesn’t let me off the hook because I would be “queen” — servant leader? yeah, that’s probably more accurate. But, doesn’t being a leader mean I have servants, not that I am a servant? Servant leader: how does that work?

I’m stuck on prophet for now. How do I speak truth in difficult situations without being mean or judgmental? How do I lay out the truth as I see it without coming across as superior? How to see a situation clearly and just say what I see lovingly, when the truth is gonna hurt? I have trouble looking in the mirror clearly and accepting truth about me on a lot of days. How can I do that with love when there is another person involved and I’m really upset?

Being reminded that I am to be a prophet is scary because first I have to be still and learn God’s truth. It’s scary because if I proclaim God’s truth I’m likely to get at best a cool reaction if the hearer isn’t in a place to hear it. I mean, even trying to share that God loves us, every one, can get you into trouble.

Thanks for the homily!