Hat tip here to Amy Welborn:
Amy asks readers to post each week on "What they heard" during the homily at mass that week. An excellent way to put it--because even if what we hear isn't what the priest said--it really doesn't matter--the faithful come away with a message nonetheless. It helps preachers make sure their homily is well written and even more well-delivered.
But I read some troubling remarks about masses yesterday:
1) Let's remember that yesterday was Gaudete Sunday--meaning rejoice Sunday. The readings were from Isaiah, Thessolonians and John's Gsopel (read them here). They all have the theme of REJOICE! Isaiah harkens that "The spirit of the Lord is upon me because he has sent me to bear glad tidings to the poor" Paul implores the Thessoloinans to "rejoice always" (and since he didn't have a Christmas holiday on his calendar, and Thessolonia wasn't always the brightest place to be--we wonder how people could be rejoicing always or why they would rejoice at all). And then we hear the story of John--the crazy man in the desert and how the religious authorities of the day questioned him about who he was and we hear for the first time about the coming savior.
2) So why are people posting things about pro-life messages and the hi-jacking of Christmas by secularists?
It seems to me that my associate pastor, Fr. Ron Franco, CSP was on the money this week. His message was simple. We rejoice and are mindful of rejoicing because we know that Jesus has already come and redeemed our suffering. This is why Paul has reason to rejoice--because he knows this.
The message for us is how can we be "Gaudete Sunday" each and every day. How do we summon that sense of rejoicing to our consciousness and how do we bring that to others?
We need a reminder of this and the church provides it for us--not merely with Christmas but on a nearby Sunday when we await the big day--a day that we are not really mindful of Christ's coming but are mired in longing and possibly impatience.
I feel bad for those who missed this message and this opportunity to remind people that the coming of the saviour is a profound moment of transformation for all of us.
Pause for Prayer: TUESDAY 4/25
14 hours ago