-Hear Last Sunday's homily at this link:Sept 7th Homily
-This Sunday's Scriptures can be found at USCCB daily readings
-I will be celebrating mass this weekend at 4:00pm Saturday, and 9:30 and 11:00 Sunday(visit St. Albert Website)
Hang in there!
The image of Jesus hanging upon the cross is the image and central feature of this week's feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. The corpus of Christ UPON the cross is the unique feature of this feast. As with Moses and his lifted up the serpent on a pole - it is not so much the pole - but the image upon it. So it is with the Cross of Christ - it is him "crucified and forsaken" ON the cross that transforms the cross from simple torture to tree of life.
What the church is encouraging us to see in this pitiful Christ hanging on a tree in torturous death is the "cost of love". True love is self-sacrificing. In fact, Jesus Crucified becomes the litmus test for all human loving. No one since the death of Jesus can claim to truly love without sacrifice. See how much our God loves us - he gave up everything (even his claim to divinity..."my God why have your forsaken me?") for the love of sinful humanity.
In fact, God became sin itself in His desire to love us. Do we recognize our sin on him? What is the "wages of sin"? Death: isolated, rejected, lonely, God-forsaken, extinction. That is the fruit of our first parents in their sin. Jesus is not only the Human Face of God but, on the cross, he is the epitome of broken humanity dead in our sin: isolated, rejected, forsaken by God, life-less.
Like the Isrealites in the desert we can be healed of our affliction (death) only by looking at it held up before us. But, will we look and see - and thus be healed? Or will be look and NOT see and thus remain dead in our sin?
Do you see yourself in the crucified Savior on the Cross? If so, don't be afraid - be healed by God's love for you there. If you do not see yourself in Him then there is no amount of mercy that will heal you. You cannot be saved from that which you do not see. Once you see your sin then you are set free.
Does any of this help you make sense out of the suffering in your life? Is it all for love? It can be.