In this guest post written before the Boston Bombing, Lynn L’Heureux reflects on “Doubts – God’s Infinite Goodness – Living in Christ – Healing gift/Bread of Life”
(Lynn L’Heureux is Special needs co-coordinator & Advisor of the Society of St Vincent de Paul Calgary Alberta Canada)
Dear Brothers and sisters: You truly show God’s goodness to others. We need others around us to keep us in the special Vincentian Spirit of goodness and love for others. Yes we will falter, we will doubt and our goodness may even become anger, but we will be called back to the living Christ because of God’s infinite goodness to us and his healing gift, Christ our bread of life. My prayer for our family today is to know the love that moves us, guides us and carries us. Come back always. Let us pray for each other and especially those who are in turmoil. We pray for all the planners of national meetings and training, to always plan in the love and presence of the Trinity. Keep our Vincentian family in the palms of your hands, Lord.
Doubts – Do you ever have them? It is truly characteristic for us to question everything. We receive information instantly on Google and we sometimes don’t trust that either. For many of us, it is often our greatest form of information. So, we can understand Thomas’ reaction to the return of Jesus. “Unless I see the wounds . . . ., I will not believe!” We often have doubts in our service. We too, question the disasters and incidences that befall some people and we question their honesty or management skills and forget that part of changing who they are and why they are there is up to us. Yes, their pain and wounds are real. Look deeper and pray and look for solutions to lift them up. Do not doubt the wounds.
God’s Infinite Goodness is there for all of us. God is bigger than we can ever know or even begin to understand. His mercy and love is beyond our capacity to understand and know. Think of the Gospels of love. Jesus was with the woman who would have been stoned to death. Jesus on the cross asked God to forgive those who crucified Him because they did not know what they were doing. We too, are called to forgive the sins of others and especially those we are trying to lift into a better life in God’s infinite love and goodness. Saint Augustine wrote, “There is no more profitable occupation for the soul than to meditate daily on the Passion of Our Lord.”
Living in Christ who is the perfect role model, is what we strive to mimic. We need to be alive in Christ from the moment our plans begin until it is done. We need to take the time to listen and be obedient. Sometimes we are moved from our comfort zone, but we know He is the guide and has the instruction book. Our many obstacles will be cleared if we are obedient. He always shows us the right path and new ways to journey with others. He is alive in us and we are alive in Him. Keep his light in our hearts, so we may also show others the way.
Healing Gift and Bread of Life, this is the never ending sacrifice of our Lord Jesus, the Messiah, the Son and Lamb of God. God gave us His Son to heal us always. It was a great sacrifice that continues forever. We are called to be servants as Vincentian and our Lord who came as a servant stands before us and is only a prayer away. We are so blessed to have the Eucharist because we know He is present in it. We become united through His flesh and blood. We become renewed each time we take the Bread of life. “Christianity is not a new philosophy or morality. We are Christians only if we encounter Christ . . . only in this personal relationship with Christ, only in this encounter with the Risen One do we really become Christians”. Pope Benedict XV1. Let us encounter Him each day in those we serve.
I encourage you to visit www.famvin.org/en and you may want to search for a wonderful story on Doubting. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It is written by José Antonio Pagola and is very inspiring. One chapter: We Christians will find out some day that many of our doubts, lived in a healthy way, without losing contact with Jesus and the community, can rescue us from a superficial faith that is satisfied with repeating formula, so that we may be prodded to grow in love and trust in Jesus, this Mystery of God Incarnate that makes up the nucleus of our faith. Pray Always!
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Those who isolate their conscience from the path of the people of God don’t know the joy of the Holy Spirit that sustains hope. – Pope Francis (then Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio)
Every time you are able to find humour in a difficult situation, you win.
He who does not pray to the Lord prays to the devil. When we don’t proclaim Jesus Christ, we proclaim the worldliness of the devil, the worldliness of the demon. – Pope Francis – from first homily as Pope 3-14-13
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