In this feast of the Nativity of John the Baptist, we are invited to put us at his school. Of course, it is not a question of imitating his life; We are at another time! It is rather to imitate his way of announcing the Lord.
But let's start at the beginning. In Elisabeth's womb, he made a first experience of the Lord. When Mary, eight days pregnant, comes to help her cousin, it is rather the encounter between Jesus and John in the womb of their mothers. Jesus confirms the father's choice: John will be the greatest of the prophets. Isaiah makes a portrait of the Prophet who announces John. « I was still in the womb when the Lord called me. The divine election is beyond us; It is free. The Lord puts his word in his mouth; This word is a sharp sword, an arrow. The word of the Prophet is there to convert the hearts; that is why the word must hurt the heart.
« In you, I'll manifest my splendour ». Every Prophet is transfigured. He is the servant of his Lord. John is the model of humility. He came to this world to announce the baptism of conversion and to designate the Lamb of God.
What wonders in the womb of a mother! How important it is to speak, to pray with the child that one wears within it; and from the beginning of the design!
Birth emphasizes that obedience to God gives back the word. Zacharias had not been able to complete the liturgy because he had become mute for lack of faith! On this day he finds her and blesses her Lord.
The obedience of faith gives us Apostolic audacity. We know that it is the Lord who speaks through us.
« The hand of the Lord was with him. »
Brothers and sisters, I remind you that through the grace of baptism, you participate in the prophetic function of Christ. We are a people of prophets.
We must constantly remember our vocation.
Being a Prophet in his family; It is not simple, Christ told us! Being a Prophet in his professional milieu; It is not simple in our society obsessed with secularism!
But if the Prophet announces the word, he does not impose it! Often we are frightened with proselytism, tolerance. That's what paralyzes! But let us not fear and dare to say that Christ is the only Savior and that there is no other.
Every man is called to salvation thanks to Christ who died for us and resurrected by the father.
What are the qualities of the Prophet? At the school of the Baptist, humility; the Prophet does not announce himself and does not seek to make the media.
Then the Prophet feeds on the word of God that he must proclaim. We must dwell in his word. It is not a question of adapting it to our time; our world must adapt to the Gospel. Otherwise we remove the flavor of the word.
Our life must conform to what we prophesy, otherwise we will be like the Pharisees who say, but do not.
The Prophet is sinful, but he announces the mercy he enjoys.
The Prophet through his life shows that the good news of salvation has made him free and it is this creative freedom that gives him his zeal.
Finally the Prophet Announces salvation to the end. He may know the martyrdom. We think of our brethren who in the world are martyred because they refuse to deny the Lord!
In this feast, let us remember our prophetic mission; reviving our baptismal grace.
Who will I send? It's up to us to answer with humility.
Born on October 11, 1951, Patrick Baldt is ordained priest of the Diocese of Paris in 1980 by Cardinal François MARTY. Professor of French, Latin and Greek from 1972 to 1975 at the Holy Cross Institution of Neuilly, where he becomes chaplain after his ordination. He was appointed in September 1984 director of the Séminaire Saint-Sulpice in Issy-les-Moulineaux. Professor [...]