Friends, in today’s Gospel, Jesus’ hometown rejects him as a prophet. And I want to say a word about your role as a prophet.

When most lay people hear about prophecy, they sit back and their eyes glaze over. “That’s something for the priests and the bishops to worry about; they’re the modern-day prophets. I don’t have that call or that responsibility.”

Well, think again! Vatican II emphasized the universal call to holiness, rooted in the dynamics of baptism. Every baptized person is conformed unto Christ—priest, prophet, and king. Whenever you assist at Mass, you are exercising your priestly office, participating in the worship of God. Whenever you direct your kids to discover their mission in the Church, or provide guidance to someone in the spiritual life, you are exercising your kingly office.

As a baptized individual, you are also commissioned as a prophet—which is to say, a speaker of God’s truth. And the prophetic word is not your own. It is not the result of your own meditations on the spiritual life, as valuable and correct as those may be. The prophetic word is the word of God given to you by God.

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