Saint for the day: Bernadette Soubirous (1844-1879)
Scripture Readings for today’s Liturgy:
Acts 9:31-42 – Psalm 116 – John 6:60-69
“Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of everlasting life!”
Here I am in the first part of the 21st Century reading about the Post Resurrection Church of 2000+ years ago! Yet, somehow, something of the faith of that early Church has been able to continue right up to this “now moment of salvation” for me sitting in the dark, quiet chapel in the early hours of the morning. I deliberately use the term, “now moment of salvation” because for God it is all the present and He would have sent his Only Begotten Son into the world If I was the only person that needed to be saved. The “how” and “why” God would have done that is not as important as the fact that He would!
I often like to think that rather than having been born into a nice, white, Catholic family in the US, I could have been born a poor, black child into a primitive tribe in the deepest, dark recesses of Africa and spent my life running around naked (wouldn’t that have been grand?) and worshiping some kind of “monkey god.” Why did God have me born the way He did? And what about those tribal people who have a hard time accepting a “white Jesus?”
I remember how amazed I was when I visited the Church of the Annunciation in Nazareth. There, in that beautiful, modern Basilica Mary is portrayed in the 15 porticos around that church in all the different styles of clothing and ethnic appearance. It was startling for me to look at Mary dressed as a Japanese women clothed in a Kimono with her hair all done up with flowery sticks. Yet this reminded me of the mystery of how God broke into our world to be the savior of all people. Not just my kind. But all people for all time.
Don’t ask me why or how God did (or does) this ‘cause I don’t know. So I fall back on the quote from Hebrews 11:1 “Only faith can guarantee the blessings that we hope for or prove the existence of the realities that at present remain unseen.”
And don’t ask my why I took this direction today. I just hope that it gives some better understanding of our faith to someone. “… to whom else can we go?”