Sunday, December 12, 2010

Remember Me Only In Light Of Your Love

December 13, 2010
Memorial of Saint Lucy, virgin and martyr

Then Balaam gave voice to his oracle: The utterance of Balaam, son of Beor, the utterance of the man whose eye is true, the utterance of one who hears what God says, and knows what the Most High knows, Of one who sees what the Almighty sees, enraptured and with eyes unveiled. I see him, though not now; I behold him, though not near: A star shall advance from Jacob, and a staff shall rise from Israel. Numbers 24:15-17

“Where was John's baptism from? Was it of heavenly or of human origin?” They discussed this among themselves and said, “If we say ‘Of heavenly origin,’ he will say to us, ‘Then why did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ‘Of human origin,’ we fear the crowd, for they all regard John as a prophet.” So they said to Jesus in reply, “We do not know.” Matthew 21:25-27

Make known to me your ways, LORD; teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my savior. For you I wait all the long day, because of your goodness, LORD. Remember your compassion and love, O LORD; for they are ages old. Remember no more the sins of my youth; remember me only in light of your love. Psalm 25:4-7

“We do not know.”

When you consider all things, we are not really much different from the chief priests and elders. We regard Jesus in his miraculous being yet still we pick and choose which parts of the Good News resonate with ourselves.

When there is an issue regarding the death penalty, the bishops of Virginia speak out and ask Catholics to take action. Some listen. Others turn a deaf ear. “We do not know.” Even when a Catholic sat in the Virginia state governor’s mansion, successful challenges to the death penalty were rare.

When there is an issue of war and the Pope and church leaders speak out against such action, some will listen and other turn a deaf ear. “We do not know.” “No more war. War never again” is not a slogan on some sign carried by a protestor outside the White House. It is a quote from Pope Paul VI in a speech delivered to the United Nations General Assembly in 1965.

Abortion. Euthanasia. Hunger. “We do not know.”

Jesus came to teach us, to make his path known to us. A star shall advance and show us the way. During this holy Advent, let us regard that star and all of its wonderfully challenging teachings.

What teaching of Jesus gives you the hardest challenge to reconcile with your personal action? Take a look at some of the issues outlined and advocated by the USCCB (

Arms Control
Death Penalty
Economic Justice
International Issues
Labor Issues
Migrants & Refugees
Social Security

Jesus came and challenged the role of the church in the ancient world. Our bishops today remain the voice now bringing the voice of the church into the modern world.

How can you use the remaining days of Advent to get ready for Jesus to come and challenge your views like he challenged the authority of the chief priests and elders?