Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Last Days

We are three days from the end of Easter, and the readings are winding down as well.

In the first reading we have Jesus telling Paul that he has born witness to him and must bear witness to him in Rome. This all seems pretty innocuous until you realize that the Greek word for witness is martyr.

This then makes the responsorial psalm "Keep me safe, O Lord" seem ironical if not ridiculous. unless,of course, we remember that we are Christians and heaven is the safest place you can be. In that sense the Lord did indeed keep him safe.

The gospel of course is also a last. It is the great final prayer of Jesus in John's gospel, and at the center of the prayer is one petition: that they may be one.

Reflecting on this petition one could ask, where do we begin? The answer is that this oneness has to begin in the heart of each of us. Recently, we have once more seen a politician living two lives, a public one and a private one and the collision of the two ended in destruction. It always does, because we only have one life, one hopefully eternal life. Prayer, meditation the sacraments, especially reconciliation, are all tools to help us attain that fundamental unity to which we are called, unity within ourself, unity with God. Then that unity must radiate out to our families, our co-workers, and to our church and our world. But has to start in the heart.