Nazareth weekend with Little Brother Marc

All that is for me the most important thing about Nazareth, the key: Nazareth is the place where God humanises himself, where the Son of God becomes man. To state it in big words, Nazareth is the sociological location of the Incarnation; to say it in simpler words, if he had been born into a priestly family, or with a father who was a scribe or doctor of the Law, his words and his personality would have been very different. He speaks to us of the Father with the words of a peasant of Galilee. It is important to be aware of that: we read that “the Word was made flesh” and thinking about it, this immerses us in contemplation; but the Word was made this particular flesh, a Galilean of Nazareth, and that also should immerse us in wonder. Why do you think that Jesus cried out one day,

“I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for hiding these things from the learned and the clever and revealing them to little ones. [...] No one knows the Son except the Father, just as no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him” (Matthew 11:25)?
He cried out because he had had the experience of this wisdom himself. And the Son who reveals is “the divine worker of Nazareth” to go back to the expression used by Charles de Foucauld.

So what is important is not so much to imagine what the life of Jesus at Nazareth was like, but to scrutinise in the Gospel what Jesus learned at Nazareth and the kind of man he became there. And why is that very important? Because if that context of life with simple people was the nourishing terrain which formed Jesus, I am permitted to think that with the same terrain and the same Spirit that animated Jesus (a Spirit that he promised and gave to us), Nazareth could also be for me the place of growth and discovery “before God and before people”.

I have said there what is at the heart, but we are not finished yet because I would like to make a rapid tour with you through the Gospel in order to identify exactly what kind of man Nazareth formed. It is inspiring to re-read the Gospel while trying to note what Jesus received from “the school of Nazareth” We will always discover new elements. Let us take up some of them: