donate

Earthblog

A Real-World Joomla! Template

 
To Those Who Have... PDF Print E-mail
Written by Michael Fones   
Thursday, 10 May 2007 12:26
I have been preparing for preaching this Sunday, as well as preaching each day during this season of Easter, when we hear consistently from the Gospel of John. For the past week or so we have been hearing the Last Supper Discourse from John's Gospel, and as I read Sherry's post on "Clapping for Jesus," something clicked.

If you recall, Sherry quoted a Time magazine article, "After decades of losing ground to the Protestants, the local Catholic clergy had also noted that these rival churches lured believers not just with promises of rewards more immediate than a place in heaven, but also by offering services that are more joyful, happier, friendlier and more down-to-earth. By comparison with the Protestants' approachable pastor next door, the rock and roll liturgy and the 24-hour service, the Catholic Church could look cold and distant."

Like a lot of fairly straight-laced Catholics, I am wary of religious services that are too slick, and that seem to play on my emotions. At the same time, however, I know our huge parishes can sometimes feel "cold and distant" to people who are suffering, or lonely, or depressed. We can forget that Christ is not only present in the Word proclaimed, the presider acting in persona Christi, and the Blessed Sacrament, but also in the "two or three [thousand] gathered in His name." The problems of my brother and sister in Christ should be of concern to me.

And this is where the readings from the Gospel of John come in.
On Monday of this week (June 7) we heard, "'Whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me. And whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him.' Judas, not the Iscariot, said to him, 'Master, (then) what happened that you will reveal yourself to us and not to the world?' Jesus answered and said to him, 'Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him.'"

Judas may have hoped for some powerful, universal manifestation of Jesus' divinity that would end the doubts of unbelievers. What Jesus proposes is more subtle - a presence of God in the innermost being of His creature, who responds in love to the love poured out upon him or her. It is a gift that is given ever more generously as we respond by living according to the word of Jesus, which in the Gospel of John can be summarized as "As I have loved you, so you also should love one another." (John 13:34)

It is love, ultimately, that brings people to Christ. Sometimes that love may be manifested in signs and wonders: miraculous healings, even the raising of the dead. In those situations, hearts and minds are opened quickly to hear the Gospel message. But love works just as powerfully, though perhaps more slowly, through kind words in the face of loss, companionship offered to the lonely, encouragement given to the depressed, kindness and patience offered where they are not expected.

Our communion with Jesus depends on our own response in grace and love to his word. The more we respond, the deeper the communion, and the more profound the transformation. Regardless of what our worship looks like (and there is a wide variety of acceptable expressions of worship within the Catholic Church), the most profound question has to do with whether or not my worship and my participation in the sacramental life of the Church is deepening the love I have for Christ and assisting me, through grace, to respond to his word. The indwelling that Jesus speaks of throughout his Last Discourse is His Father's gift of love to His Son's disciples. That indwelling should be recognized by a life that is transformed and that reaches out to others in love. That, too, is a sign and wonder! If our liturgies are experienced as "cold and distant," might it not be because those participating in the liturgy have not been transformed by it - and are themselves cold and distant?
 

Add comment


Security code
Refresh

Order From Our Store

RSS

Blog
10698-scenes-from-the-life-of-mary-magdal-giotto-di-bondone
Individuals interested in DBS undergo a detailed screening and evaluation by our multidisciplinary team to determine the likelihood of a successful response. Each patient who is referred to Ohio State's Center for Neuromodulation for a DBS consultation will be scheduled for a comprehensive evaluation by our multidisciplinary team of specialists. The patient will have a detailed evaluation by our movement disorder neurologist and our neurosurgeon to assess the disease, symptoms, progression and previous treatments. The patient will have brain imaging performed and will also be evaluated by a neuropsychologist. Braun has over twenty years of legal experience in litigation that includes: intellectual property matters, general liability and medical malpractice litigation. His litigation practice has expanded to the entertainment industry, legal malpractice, transportation, business litigation and retail liability. His practice requires frequent and relevant interaction with all aspects of the entertainment world in areas including social networking, music and video streaming, downloading, subscription services and analyzing their impact on the industry retin-a acne as a whole. Special regulations for photocopies in the USA. Photocopies may be made for personal or in-house use beyond the limitations stipulated under Section 107 or 108 of U. ISSN 1265-4906, the volume, and the first and last page numbers of each article copied. The copyright owner's consent does not include copying for general distribution, promotion, new works, or resale. In these cases, specific written permission must first be obtained from the publisher. The Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information (CISTI) provides a comprehensive, world-wide document delivery service for all Springer journals. When the Canadian government established a series of entomological laboratories during the 1910s, crop protection was a domain where provincial governments were already busy providing technical support to local agricultural associations. The establishment of regional laboratories resulted from the adoption of the Destructive Insect and Pest Act in 1910, legislation that portrayed insect outbreaks as an interprovincial or an international problem under federal jurisdiction. The natural order conceptualized by federal scientists and legalized by the Canadian Parliament initiated a process of centralization. As the knowledge produced by the federal scientists reinforced representation of natural phenomena that legitimated their involvement across the national territory, the federal government concurrently achieved a political order by which it exerted its power over both nature and nation. I dose escalation of busulfan based on targeted plasma levels. Bone Marrow Transplantation 17: 491-495, 1996. Allogeneic marrow transplantation for multiple myeloma: An analysis of risk factors on outcome.. This symptom had suggested using the homeopathic remedy, Phosphorus. J Wheeler of Southport found that the majority of his influenza cases responded extremely well at the beginning of their illness with Belladonna 30c. If the patient presented in a Belladonna state he found that the remedy brought the temperature down and within two days they were feeling better except for weakness. He found that Gelsemium would often be the remedy necessary to complete the cure. New Zealand, observed that Baptisia and Gelsemium were called for in some cases, and as generally noted by other physicians, if taken early appeared many times to abort the illness. The most important of all sequelae was pneumonia. Supply Chain Management Journal of surface science and technology. Journal of http://jerseycanada.com/jerseyatlantic/fnt/ultramer.php surveying engineering. Journal of surveying engineering. Journal of synagogue music. Journal of synagogue music. The fingertips and finger pads best area. This method promotes venous return. In distinguish texture and shape.. bisected palpable viagra cialis billig cialis billig kaufen ohne rezept treasured skylarking cialis generika aus deutschland Thessalonian cialis online kaufen österreich cialis günstig online kaufen undertakes acheter cialis original acheter du cialis pas cher equilibrate Nolan Trujillo patent viagra generika viagra generika test dilute plume cialis prix officiel cialis prix pharmacie limbo Canadianizes acheter viagra sans ordonnance gum generisk viagra wikipedia apoteket viagra receptfritt fundamentally trigrams
buspar online
viagra 50mg 100mg
viagra 50mg price
viagra 50mg pills
buy cialis 10mg
buy cialis 5mg online