The following reflection is by Fr.Tom Cahill
It’s official: women cry more than men do. Researchers in Germany have discovered that while men shed tears six to 17 times a year women do so 30 to 64 times. And, whereas men go with the flow for two to four minutes, women’s tear ducts, once activated, stay in hyperdrive for up to six minutes. Furthermore, if a woman starts weeping she accelerates to full-blown sobbing in 65 percent of cases. For men, it’s six percent. Now to end this mini-deluge of drippy data: women cry when they feel inadequate, face dicey situations, or when remembering past events; men cry from empathy, or because of a failed relationship.
That last bit makes me wonder how Peter feels in today’s Gospel reading (Luke 9:18-24) when Jesus practically rebukes him for giving an honest answer to his question. Jesus is praying; stops for a moment, and as if still in prayer asks a worried question: ‘Who do people say I am?’ He doesn’t react when his disciples say John the Baptist, or Elijah, or a prophet, but he comes down heavily on them when Peter nails him as the Messiah.
This is too close to the bone. Jesus’ hour for self-acceptance has not yet come. But it will. He journeys to self-knowledge and self-acceptance as we do: gradually. On that same journey our personal question is not about what others think of me but about what I think of myself. Has my ‘hour’ come for my discovery and acceptance of self as God’s son or daughter? If not, what a crying shame!