For High Prairie St. Paul’s Roman Catholic Church
“If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit and become My disciples.” [John 15]
One of Christ’s first acts was to “be with” His flock. “Being with” involves risks but necessary if we are to forge relationships that are true and profound. John calls Him “The Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.”
How is our faith? Jesus asks us, “What are you looking for?” and “Where are you staying?”
How do we ignite the flame? Faith is a total commitment and is facilitated through the church. We must be prepared to be humble and acknowledge our weaknesses.
Does faith mean that we expect others to conform? St. Thomas refused to believe unless he saw and felt for himself. Most of us can point to instances in our life when we, too, needed to “put our hand in Christ’s side”.
One might wonder about our questions and doubts. Beyond faith, let us raise our eyes and rediscover God in our life. Our desire is to be inspired by something greater. One thing we can count on: our Lord will always guide us. His promise: “I will be with you until the end of time.”
How to imitate? Pope Francis tells us that joy must live in our hearts. Jesus did not renounce His faith but enhanced it by not adhering to tenets that excluded people. He was not motivated by personal gain but wanted to bring salvation to everyone.
Do we have the faith of the leper? “If you choose, you can make me clean.”
And Christ did! Today, leprosy can be said to have many faces: racism, violence, trafficking, instability, and poverty come to mind.
Virtue is needed as we contemplate the precious gift of faith. The Holy Spirit works in our lives in different ways: witnessing, guiding, promoting, fostering growth. Sometimes, it is our turn to experience, and, at other times, to be the example. We must never lose sight of the fact that faith is a gift, freely given and freely accepted. Faith projects light on our humanity and guides us.
St. Terese of Calcutta put it thus: “We have a wrong idea that only hunger for bread is hunger. There is greater hunger: hunger for love, for the feeling of being wanted, to be somebody to somebody.”
Surely with her inspiration, we can do our small part to end modern leprosy.