Bottom line: These blessings and joys give us a sense that even though tears and drudgery fill our lives, still there is something beyond: a new heaven and a new earth where God will wipe away every tear.
This is the second homily in our series "As I Have Loved You". We hear Jesus say, "I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another." We saw last Sunday that God loves us by wiping away tears. I mentioned the tears of parents who have lost a dear child. I think of my sister-in-law who lost her son in a tragic fire. She is a woman of great faith, but the tears continue. She looks forward to what John describes as the "new heaven and the new earth":
"He (God) will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there shall be no more death or mourning, wailing or pain, for the old order has passed away."
When I was young, a wise person told me: "Treat each person like he has a broken heart and you will not be wrong". We live in a valley of tears. Still, this valley does have plenty of beauty, even joy. I think of the beauty of nature that surrounds us. Babies and toddlers bring us joy. Adolescents and young adults, even though we sometimes have a time understanding them, also bring joy. I think especially of our young people who will be confirmed next Saturday.
A tasty, nourishing meal, a good night's sleep - these are blessings God gives in midst of sorrow and fatigue. And we have the gift of friendship, even those friends we no longer see very often. This week I am going to St. Meinrad's, Indiana, for a reunion of my seminary class. We spent four years together in Rome. Even though most I've had little communication with, still I look forward to reconnecting.
These blessings and joys give us a sense that even though tears and drudgery fill our lives, still there is something beyond: a new heaven and a new earth where God will wipe away every tear. With that vision of a new heaven and a new earth we work to make better this world below. One way we do it is through the Annual Catholic Appeal. With that in mind I ask you to give your full attention to this year's witness speakers: Carl & Emily Gismervig (and Elsie).
From Archives (Fifth Sunday of Easter, Cycle C):
Seapadre Homilies: Cycle A, Cycle B, Cycle C
Audio Files of Homilies (Simple Catholicism Blog)
Are these homilies a help to you? Please consider making a donation to St. Mary of the Valley Parish.
Other Priests' Homilies, Well Worth Listening:
Fr. Kurt Nagel
Fr. Frank Schuster
Fr. Brad Hagelin
Fr. Jim Northrop
Fr. Michael White
Fr Pat Freitag (and deacons of St. Monica)
Bishop Robert Barron
Bulletin (St. Mary of Valley Parish)
Parish Picture Album
MBC - Mary Bloom Center, Puno, Peru