06/04/2017 - BEHOLD, I AM WITH YOU ALWAYS UNTIL THE END OF THE AGES!
BEHOLD, I AM WITH YOU ALWAYS
UNTIL THE END OF THE AGE!
As we look together and experience together all that our Father has done for us, there is only one explanation that emerges: He loves you! He loves to be in your presence! He loves to hear your voice and He loves when you listen to Him and place all your trust in His loving goodness!
For the Feast of the Ascension, our Father guided us through three concrete moments in which this fundamental truth stands out with stunning clarity.
As one prayerfully reads through the first few chapters of Genesis, it becomes very clear that our Lord created us out of love and for love. He is joy, happiness, life, eternal life and He created us so that He could pour His love into our hearts. He created us in His image and likeness so that we could know and love Him. Each day is a gift! As we grow in our knowledge and love of the Lord, we are able to receive even more of His joy, peace, goodness and eternal life.
In the first chapters of Genesis, we also see that our Father had an appointment each day that He would never miss: His afternoon walk through paradise with Adam and Eve. He loved to hear their voices. He loved when they shared their life with Him and when they listened to Him and trusted in His loving goodness.
THE 40 DAYS OF EASTER
Our Risen Savior chose to spend forty days with His people after His resurrection. He could have easily appeared to the Apostles once, shown them His hands and side, eaten a meal with them and then ascended immediately to our Father’s right hand. Instead, Jesus chose to dwell with His people for forty days before He ascended. On one occasion, our Lord lit a fire, cooked some fish, and prepared some bread so that His apostles might enjoy a hearty breakfast with Him on the shores of the Sea of Galilee. Jesus loves to be with His people. He loves to hear their voices. He loves to cast out the shades of darkness and doubt.
Do you realize what happened when Jesus ascended to the right hand of the Father? He ascended with a human heart, human eyes, ears, and vocal cords. The Catechism of the Catholic Church speaks about the tremendous joy our Father experienced when at last He heard the voice of a son of Adam once again in paradise! When Jesus speaks to the Father in paradise, He does so now with a human voice! Our Father longs for your return home! As Christians, we are sure that when we die, yes, we will close our eyes for one last time. But, we are also sure that when we open our eyes, we will see Jesus and Jesus will bring us to our Father’s loving embrace and oh how our Father will delight to hear our voices in paradise!
THE REAL AND TRUE PRESENCE
Christians from the beginning have interpreted the real and true presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament as a fulfillment of His promise to be with us always. St. Thomas Aquinas, as he sought to understand the main motive for Jesus remaining with us in our tabernacles, heard a one word answer from the lips of Jesus: Friendship! It is the nature of friendship that friends live together and share one another’s lives! Jesus has chosen to be with us in the Eucharist because He loves us, He loves to be in our presence, He loves to hear our voices and He loves when we visit Him, listen to Him, and place all our trust in Him!
SIGNS AND WONDERS
We’ve been seeing together that as we, as a parish family, embrace more fully our dignity and responsibility by telling others about Jesus and bringing others to encounter Jesus that He, the Lord, would be confirming our testimony by working signs and wonders. Last Saturday, I spoke briefly with one of our parishioners who was overflowing with joy and gratitude to Jesus. The Wednesday before I had been called to anoint her grandfather. He was experiencing kidney failure and a transition to hospice. Jesus, through the holy anointing, healed his kidneys! The doctors told the granddaughter that they had never seen someone’s kidneys come back like that! This is really Good News! News worthy of sharing! Jesus is a loving and mighty Savior. Jesus heals! Let us join in praising and thanking our Lord for His loving compassion and let us trust in Him with all our hearts!
Mark and Edita Patterson, with our Lord’s help and Chuck’s assistance, created a glorious Armed Forces Memorial Wall in our beloved parish Church. They donated hours of their time. They donated their resources. They put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into the realization of that beautiful memorial. It is so fitting that we now have a place in our Church where we may honor and pray for the men and women of our Armed Forces! Thank you! Also, may their example inspire other parishioners to be generous with their gifts in helping to build up our parish family here at St. Louise!
Let’s remember to keep each other in prayer this week.
In Jesus and Mary,