…..from your Pastor’s Desk:
No, this is not a comment on the election. Funny thing about my article in the bulletin last week. Did you know when I wrote that? FOUR YEARS AGO! Last week as I sat down to write my column, I wanted to say something about the election and I remembered that I had written an article just before the last one. I pulled up the bulletin on-line from then, and was able to reprint it as it was – only changing one number; 12 to 13. Wow. Some things do never change. Hopefully though, some will.
Every year on the last Sunday of Ordinary Time – we have apocalyptical readings about the ‘End-Times’. Truth is, we do not know when the Last Day will come, Christ does not tell us. But what He does tell us very clearly in the Holy Gospel today is not to listen to those who say the end is nigh. What we have to do is simply live our lives as one of His true followers, come what may. Each generation, time and place brings its own challenges for those who follow His way. For some this will involve being persecuted, for others it will mean resisting apathy and marginalization. The important thing is that we remain faithful to Christ whatever the particular challenges might be. This is what we are really about; this is our challenge, to live the same kind of life that Jesus lived. To model ourselves so closely on Him that we begin instinctively to think about things the way He does. That our actions become the type of things He would do. This is what it is to be faithful; this is what it is to be Christ-like.
All that being said, the only problem with doing this is that one begins to find that the kind of things that happened to Jesus begin also to happen to you. Now that sounds fine if people begin to look up to you and listen to what you say with greater care and you get a lot of invitations to come and visit their homes. The drawback is that it also means that a fair number of people will dislike you and all kinds of obstacles can appear in your path. But what words of consolation does Jesus give us? ‘Do not worry what to say, I myself will give you an eloquence and a wisdom that no one will be able to resist or contradict. And your endurance will win you your lives.’ This is the truth, and these are the words of Jesus. Follow my teachings, live the gospel values, stay close to the Father and all will be well. It is not the end, it is just the beginning.
This is why we gather together each week to proclaim God’s praises, to hear His teaching and to break the bread of life together. For it is here at this table of the Lord, this table of plenty, that we are at one with Him, that we experience communion with Him – the Lord of Heaven and Earth. We are the ones who are looked to when people want to see Christ in our present day. They look at our lives, our reputations, the strength of our faith, the depth of our interest in justice, they look at everything we say or do. They know we are his witnesses, and they look to us because the one they want to find is Christ. We are all very aware of our own strengths and weaknesses, our own ability or inability when it comes to always putting in to practice much of what Christ teaches. And we think that we can hardly give witness to anything much let alone Christ. But do not be fooled. When they look at us, looking for Christ…they do find him.