Deuteronomy 7: 6-11 1 John 4: 7-16 Matthew 11: 25-30
Today’s liturgical celebration of the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus comes in the midst of a world that is in the throes of change, desperately seeking to remain alive. The power of pandemic disease continues to ravage the populations of nations, the forces of hatred and division deeply embedded in histories of privilege and oppression are being explosively revealed and challenged, and the power of fear creates social and economic chaos in community after community.
But this year the Church’s liturgy, often replete with images of power and great acts of transformation discloses the solid, silent power of the deep roots of foundational love; the silent fidelity of love for a thousand generations (remember that the biblical “thousand” is “infinite number”) found in the text from Deuteronomy. The second reading from the First Letter of John calls us to “remain” – to stay patiently faithful through the trauma and passages of life – to hold fast to the fidelity of God. Finally the gospel reading from Matthew presents the image of meekness as the symbol of power; of accepting the yoke that binds us to God’s freedom – easy and light in its tender protection of our pathway into mercy and fidelity.
The surprise of this Feast of Love – for thus it is – is that God so loves us that Divine Presence / Holy Mystery is a haven of peace in the turmoil that surrounds our planet.
Many are still unable to participate regularly in the celebration of the Eucharist because of the pandemic, but surely we will find the Blood and Water and the Bread of Life in a quiet hour of prayer with these scripture passages of God’s Word, allowing God to gently adjust the yoke that binds us to him in hope, in faith, and in a love so deep and profound that no explosion, wind, fire or flood, can remove these roots of life. May that be our prayer as we take refuge deep in the heart of Jesus beating for infinite generations with perfect love for us. A Blessed and Happy Feast Day to all!