I did a funeral last week for a person who was the co-founder of “Reiki Training” in Australia and New Zealand. He used to travel to give classes around Sydney, Melbourne, Tasmania and New Zealand. Lots of his students attended the funeral. There was a beautiful choir from a charismatic prayer group which his wife is also a part of. When I came home from the funeral I received a text message from a person expressing her unsatisfactory concern about the content of some parts of the “eulogy” done by the deceased’s students. She said: “It is inappropriate to advertise Reiki during a funeral”. Reading the text message, I tried to recall those eulogies at that funeral. I did not recall any form of advertisement of Reiki. The main point of their sharing was about the deceased’s tenderness and love as the focus of the Reiki. He has touched hundreds of hearts with his tenderness and attentive heart.
Reading this weekend’s gospel, I am confronted with the fact that we might not see any good result or progress of the mustard seed in terms of decreasing number of Catholics in Australia as well as the number of Catholics practicing their faith (weekend mass attendance). However, I am gladdened at the same time with the way of life of people that touch lots of hearts like the deceased person I mentioned above. A young married lady who was not allowed to work by her wealthy husband experienced great loneliness. Every day she takes her dog to comfort dying cancer patients at St Vincent Hospital. She can escape from loneliness by comforting the dying. She has touched the hearts of many of the dying. I am glad to see that the mustard seeds have given fruits to the world by loving people around us, because the kingdom of God is not just measured by the number of people going to Mass, but also how people experience love and share love with others.
I may quote from Sunday Missal book concerning our theme today:
“The church is nourished in its growth by the Eucharist and the word of God (Mass). The church is like a growing tree, already bearing fruit and giving comfort (touching hearts of our world)”.