Third Sunday of Lent 2022
Moses said to God, “But when I go to the Israelites and say to them,
‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’
if they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what am I to tell them?”
God replied, “I am who am.”
~ Exodus 3:13-14a
Brothers and Sisters,
It’s a fact of modern life; remembering that special password opens doors! As our digital world expands, many of us have opted to use a password manager, so we can use (and remember) one password to access many different platforms. Still, recalling one unique set of letters, numbers, and a special character can still be a difficult task, especially when life gets hectic! As a result, we can get locked out of our devices. Or worse, your security company issues an automated request for the police to check out potential break-ins at your work or business.
In today’s first reading, Moses is worried the Israelites will continue to lock him out because he grew up in a foreign culture, raised by Egyptians. Moses understands he needs to say the correct phrase, so the Israelites replace their indifference with trust. Moses presents God with this human dilemma and his desire to “name-drop” and asks, “But when I go to the Israelites and say to them, ” ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ if they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what am I to tell them?’ ” In reply, God indicates that he is more than just a name; he is the source of all being. From his existence, all of creation comes forth. The name of God is a powerful tool – able to open doors and grant access. In revealing his name, “I am who am,” command, we, in turn, have life and unique identity.
As we enter the doors, the celebrant asks a crucial question at our baptisms. No, we do not ask for the name of God to enter. We ask for your name. Your unique name is the one that opens the doors which lead to an encounter with God, and entrance to your forever, spiritual family, the Church community. God empowers us with that identity as his beloved children and grants access to the eternal.
But our new identities come with a responsibility. Like Moses, we must go forth in the name of God, participating in the work of salvation, beginning at first from our homes and then to the greater community.
To that intention, I’ve seen quite a bit of movement in our country regarding the rights and protection of unborn children recently. Sadly, a move in the Maryland legislature is seeking to cement a “Right to Abortion” in our state constitution. Please read the open letter from the bishops of Maryland posted in the Baltimore Sun by visiting https://www.baltimoresun.com/opinion/op-ed/bs-ed-op-0312-maryland-abortion-bill-20220311-qkhvmc2ba5aqbdvqqvnmakgmyi-story.html. Do also consider joining the Maryland Catholic Advocacy Network at www.mdcatholic.org/petition-stop abortion to stay up to date on all that is happening. Finally, please join me in offering prayers by visiting www.mdcatholic.org/prayer and signing the petition today to halt this amendment at the following web address www.mdcatholic.org/petition-stop abortion. Thank you for being so committed to living in freedom as God’s children as we protect life and help others set themselves free from the slavery of sin.
St. Joseph, pray for us.
Live Jesus in our hearts, forever.
Rev. Michael S. Triplett