Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Love of God is a Consuming Fire

Jesus, the mighty Lion of Judah, tells us from today's Mass readings, 
"I have come to set the earth on fire,
and how I wish it were already blazing!
There is a baptism with which I must be baptized,
and how great is my anguish until it is accomplished!"
Listen to my homily for today:

If you have trouble listening, click here.

Blessed Pope John Paul II, wrote a book about the human person called, Person and Act, but most people know the translation called, The Acting Person, in which he tells us that since man is a moral being whose actions are always leading him to the good or away from it, his actions, words, thoughts either build up the quality of his moral being or detract from it.  In a particular way, this is true for the body, which itself has its own memory.  The first reading talks about this:

For just as you presented the parts of your bodies as slaves to impurity
and to lawlessness for lawlessness,
so now present them as slaves to righteousness for sanctification.
We can either grow in holiness or in impurity with our body.  The part of the body that can perhaps sully or  sanctify our body the most is our lips.  We must always be careful to use our mouth to build up rather than destroy, to bless rather than curse, to bring healing rather than ill.  This is true in our day with our use of the media.  We should think before we use our fingers to type something that can be spread abroad for the tearing down of another.  We should ask first, 
"Is this truly going to help my brother, is it what he really, really, needs to hear that will help him, or will it rather contribute to the huge mass of useless, careless, needless, and even dangerous communication that already clutters up the internet?"
In the Gospel we see that even if we have sinned with our bodies, the fire of God's holy Love can consume us, especially when we use the same lips that we have sinned with, to confess our sins in the sacrament of peace and reconciliation.  When someone comes to me in confession with a sin of the lips, cursing, guile, or has spoken malice or oppression to another, I always ask them for a penance to allow the Eucharistic Host to remain on their tongue for a while.  Let Jesus bless, sanctify, and heal your body, beginning with your mouth.

Our Lady's Immaculate Heart could be said to be a white-hot, immaculate furnace of the consuming love of the Most Holy Trinity.  May Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity pray for us and help our words, thoughts, and actions set this world ablaze with the love of God.

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