5th Sunday of Easter Reflection
“God always begins with women, always, they open ways. They don’t doubt: they know; they have seen Him; they have touched Him. They have also seen the empty sepulchre… Today also, in face of the coming — let’s hope it’s soon –the coming end of this pandemic, there is the same option: either our bet will be for life, for the resurrection of the peoples, or it will be for the god money: to return to the sepulchre of hunger, of slavery, of wars, of the arms factories, of children without education . . . the sepulchre is there.” (Pope Francis APRIL 13, 2020)
We love you, our beautiful Mother Church, visible sign of love and unity in the great diversity of the nations, spotless Bride of Christ, holy yet also sinful. We as church do rightfully speak of the feminine genius of love, a Love that unites. This Love that unites is our participation in the Trinitarian procession in which all peoples and all of creation participates.
Jesus speaks to us of this participation and union with God as his reality, as it is also our reality. Jesus the Christ in the Father, the father in Jesus as Jesus is also in us, and we are in Jesus. This is the wondrous truth of our communion in the Eucharist.
This is our union with the outpouring source of love who is formless, with God who is form in the incarnated word who is the Christ. This is our participation in the dynamic life and love energy between what is seen and the unseen as we proclaim in our creeds through the centuries.
Yes, holy yet sinful. All of us, all of creation and worthy of redemption by God’s own Word, yet each of us have also participated in the great divide that threatens to engulf us as we gaze ever deeper into the abyss. Forgive us Lord, dearest Beloved, for our participation in all those who are excluded by our clever words and our manipulations. Forgive us especially O Lord for our participation in the exclusion of feminine genius of love, alters and from our pulpits. Our expensive diversions keep us insulated and mindless to the horrors that we have helped create.
Each one of us has been affected and in some way infected; each one of us has participated in union with the suffering of the Peoples of this generation. No one has been exempted from the journey of isolation and purification. Suffering and death are no longer indifferent distant images, but have entered into our homes, our malls, our communities, our families and into the very heart of our beloved church.
We have been carried into participation and union and for so many of us, hearts are broken wide open. Fragile promises and hope keep us clinging to our old ways of life with grim determination. Things were always better when… But it is above all fear and rivalry for resources that drives the human race to constrict, to erect barricades and to form unholy alliances that excludes particularly that feminine genius of love.
The problem of sin and evil, our pain and our suffering, cannot be confronted through some pious platitudes; even less by a bloodthirsty and vengeful deity or an all-powerful satanic attack. Scripture informs us that bitterness, anger, resentment and transference, leads always and only to a cycle of violence, retaliation and death.
How can we to move out of this deadly cycle? In today’s gospel Jesus tells us that: “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” How can this become my reality in the midst of the chaos that surrounds us?
Much of the time we attend church for a few moments of relief and in order to escape from this world and enter a dream world of sweetness, vague poetry, and universal charm, a place of refuge from the world that is cold, hard, greedy and overly competitive. But the truth is that we are called to be church in order to enter into the world as transformed people; a new creation.
God has sent the Incarnated Word into the world with the purpose and mission of transforming it and giving it back its true value and meaning from within, and that in Christ, God is sending us to do the same.
The purity of Mary’s heart, the heart of a mother, leads us always to the centre that is in Christ; the Way, the Truth and the Life. There is no other way and the call is always urgent.
Far too many of us have been deeply hurt, physically and emotionally by the church and by organised religion and now must live with these scars. Many of us are nauseated by the triumphalism of our church that has become so intertwined with empire, power and domination, yet, just like my brother Richard I also
“Can’t give up on healthy religion, because it alone is prepared to point us beyond the mere psychological or personal—to the cosmic, to the universal, to the Absolute. Only healthy, great religion is prepared to realign, re-heal, reconnect all things and reposition us inside of the biggest possible picture. Basically, when we say we love God, we are saying you love everything. No exceptions. That is precisely what it means, and we must begin to make that clear.”