Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Simon-Peter had already witnessed the healing of his mother-in-law. Now he experienced the miraculous haul of fishes. Like Isaiah, he found himself utterly confronted by divine holiness. He responds as if that were the case. Notice how, aware of his own unworthiness, Peter says, Depart from me for I am a sinner, O Lord. Like Isaiah, Peter, too, is challenged by God’s vast holiness. Like Isaiah, he too, is confronted with his own moral, psychological and spiritual reality. And like Isaiah, he too, experiences the transforming power of grace. Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men. The pattern is clear. God’s call always involves three things: an encounter with holiness, the acceptance of one’s own wounded reality, and the touch of transforming grace. It is important for us to remember, as well, that God always acts divinely and we always act in a human way. Vocation draws us into the dance between two very different ways of acting. Are we ready to join the liberating dance of Spirit? Are we ready to respond to the attraction of God? Are we ready to walk in the manner of Christ, bearers of holiness and compassion in a lost world?