Friday, November 19, 2010

Love offering of the Mass

Today is Friday and in our little town we get to have the Mass (Eucharist). There is nothing that I enjoy more than to assist at the Mass. That’s the truth.  I know that for many people that’s not so.
I do have one complaint about the Mass.  I get distracted just when the dynamic of the Mass hits its high point.  The Mass is not only a sacred banquet; it is a sacrifice of love.  Jesus poured out his love on the cross and he continues to love; he never takes his love back.  He is always self-emptying for the other.
Of course, the object of Jesus’ love is our Creator and all of us creatures.  In the Mass the great self-giving of Jesus is prepared sacramentally (through ritual that holds the reality) at the time of the consecration.  Wow!  What creativity Jesus had to think of how best to give us himself in an act of love! Joachim Jeremias, the great scholar of Jesus’ language, Aramaic, says that when Jesus said “Do this in remembrance of me”, Jesus really meant:  remember me to God the Father.
Having before us on the altar the Body that is given for us and the Blood that is poured out for us, the dynamic of the Mass invites us all to unite our lives with the on-going love of Jesus in the GREAT OFFERING :  through Christ, with Him, and in Him is to You God almighty Father, in the unity of the the Holy Spirit, all honor and all glory for ever and ever.
I like that chance to say to God with Jesus:  I (and we) return all our love to our Creator.  The dynamic is terrific.  My complaint is that there are so many distracting prayers just before this GREAT OFFERING that I have to make such an effort to realize it is happening.  Also it would help a lot if all the people at the Mass, and not only the priest, could say the words:  “through Christ, . . . “.   The “great Amen” is not enough for me.   
While at Mass this morning I will try to “be with it” and not allow my “monkey mind” to stray me from the great dynamic of love offering.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Who is God? And Who Am I?

Good Morning!   I notice that many times we like to bring God down to our size.  I was recently in a church where the Blessed Trinity is depicted as a father of about the age sixty, seated with a young man of about the age of thirty, and a dove hovering over both of them.  They were dressed in regal robes and wore kingly crowns. This certainly does not appeal when In our times we have learned that what exists are hundreds of billions of stars, and we are still counting, measuring space in terms of light years, etc.  Who/what is this God whom I credit with having originated our evolving universe?
Of course, our little minds cannot fathom the bigness of God.  One thing I think would be helpful, is not to start with ourselves, for example:  “This person is kind and good; God is like that, kind and good.”  Rather, start with God:  “God is love; my ability to love is minuscule compared with the ability of the One who is the Source of all love in the world.”

Friday, November 5, 2010

Beautiful and Good

This morning, November 2, 2010, I just came back from voting and so got to have the experience of the fresh air and sunshine of our beautiful Minnesota. As I look around me I see God my Creator speaking loudly from everything I look at – the trees as they ready themselves for winter, the white puffy clouds in front of the blue sky, and the gushing water of the Mississippi. Existence speaks to me of the primacy of God the Father; this Person of God self-expresses as the Word; that which exists and self-expresses is full of life and change, the Spirit. I see everything  imaging God to me of this three-fold relationship within the Blessed Trinity. It is beautiful and good. May God be praised!