This weekend as we come together as a faith community we have a special opportunity to both respond to love and to celebrate the love of God in Jesus Christ. We are reminded more and more each day of that old song that says: “What the Word needs now is Love, Sweet Love.” Day in and day out we are called to deepen our commitment to both living love and celebrating that love.
The love of God is being poured out upon us and our community in a special way. Two weeks ago twelve of our parishioners received the sacrament of Confirmation. Empowered and sent by the Holy Spirit to be agents and advocates of Love. To share the love of Jesus Christ through their own personal commitment to Christ love and to live it out within the context of this faith community. And so it was with great joy we celebrated the power of God’s love poured out upon our members receiving the fullness of their baptism.
This weekend we again see the love of God lived and celebrated as again a sign of God’s love and celebrating it. Our children who receive, for the first time communion, are united with us in our communion with Christ through this great sacrament of the Body and the Blood of Christ. For our children it is a deeper experience of entering into and living in the divine life of love with our God who Is love. This love of God first expressed through the love of their parents who in living out their vocation of love, share the love of God and forming their children in that love by living out their call to be church. That is they form the domestic church where the Gospel is first taught and the love of God is first experienced in the lives of parents.
The second reading today from John’s first letter tell us:
“Children, let us love not in word or speech
but in deed and truth.”
Love must be lived, expressed and celebrated through action that is namely and primarily by doing something. Love has to be more than lip service, we cannot say that we love, and still hate our sister or brother. This month of May as we honor our blessed mother is also Asian American History Month. In a time where we see racism’s ugly head raised now again our Asian sisters and brothers reminds us of the need to seek the conversion of the hearts and minds of many in our nation.
There are those who continue to see in persons who are different the “other” as being somehow less or unworthy of love and respect. We are again reminded that the Christian must be a person of great love. This is core to our faith and it is the very reason for which Jesus came to be with us, to suffer and die for us that we might experience the great gift of love.
“we should believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ,
and love one another just as he commanded us.”
To Love is to remain connected to Christ, as the vine is to the branches. One can only imagine Jesus walking through a vineyard, He and disciples picking grapes as they walked along and Jesus using this as an opportunity to teach His disciples about love and remaining connected to one another and seeing each other as valuable. Just as each branch of the vine is valuable to the vine grower, they are raised up, pruned and nurtured so that they might bear fruit, so to are we to remain with Jesus cared for, loved and formed so that we might in turn share the love of Jesus with others. Let our love bear fruit to all those we encounter.