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The Great Divorce

I tell you solemnly, anyone who does not welcome the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it
Genesis 2:18-24; Psalm 128:1-6; Hebrews 2:9-11; Mark 10:2-16

Sermon Week Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle B

Scripture Summary Mark 10:15

A man named Robert came home from work one evening and was astonished to find his wife Alice cramming her belongings into a suitcase. “What on earth are you doing?” he cried. “I can’t stand it anymore,” she said. “Thirty-two years we’ve been married, and we keep on bickering and quarreling and ignoring each other. I’m fed up, and I’m leaving!” Stunned, Robert watched his wife close the suitcase, drag it down the stairs, out the front door, and down the street. Suddenly, the distraught husband ran into the bedroom, grabbed a second suitcase and quickly threw in some clothing. Racing outside toward his wife he shouted, “Alice, you're right — I can't stand it either. Just give me a minute, and I’ll go with you.”

Studies have shown that divorce is a highly predictable outcome among couples caught in such a downward spiral of negative interaction. As proof, a professor of psychology at the University of Washington in Seattle studied more than two thousand married couples in different parts of the country. What he discovered about spousal interaction was so revealing that he was able to predict, with 94% accuracy, which couples would stay together during a four- year period and which would divorce. -1

In today's Gospel Lesson, the Pharisees once again are trying to put Jesus in a tight spot, but the result is 100% predictable. The Pharisees begin by asking Jesus for His opinion on the matter of marriage-and-divorce. After recounting the discussion that followed, the Gospel writer then describes a scene in which children are involved. At first glance, the two subjects — children and divorce — may seem to be separate and distinct. But they are closely related.

"Let the little children come to Me," Jesus says, "for it is to such as these that the Kingdom of God belongs" (Mk. 10:14). "Then He put His arms around them," Mark tells us, "and gave them His blessing" (Mk. 10:16).

Think for a moment: when a child learns to say a new word, there is a delight in the discovery. And as the child continues to repeat the [...]

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