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Get into the ring! How this works...

This is easy! Each week on Thursday I post my homily main focus for preaching this coming Sunday. What I am hoping for is a reaction from people in the pews. Does my "focus" connect with your daily life, faith, and experience? Or not? Either affirm the direction I am going in (by giving me an example from your life) or challenge me, ask for clarification! Questions are the best! Reaction rather than reflection is what I'm looking for here. Don't be afraid, get in the ring. Ole!

Saturday, May 27, 2017

May 28 Ascension Homily Prep

-This Sunday's Scriptures can be found at
-I will be celebrating mass at 4:00 on Saturday and 8:00am on Sunday

Move Over!

Today's celebration of  the Ascension of our Lord,  like the  common expression "move over", is the invitation to make room  in our lives for another. The reading from the Acts of the apostles, Saint Luke's second book, says very clearly that "this Jesus who has been taken up will return to you in the same way."

Rather than another new idea about God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, our ascension theology or spirituality might be understood as  an invitation  to open ourselves, making room for a deeper relationship with God in our lives.

This speaks clearly to the notion of communion and the spirituality of encounter and the theme of resurrection  that I have been sharing throughout this Easter time.  The resurrection is not only something that happened to Jesus but something that has transformed our world. Step into the resurrection which is new life.

This notion of making room or "move over" can  especially affect our attitude in prayer. If praying were understood as the spiritual practice in faith of moving over to make more room for God in our hearts we might pray very differently.

This notion of "moving over" might also be helpful in our desire to live a more compassionate life in communion. The world talks to us about "tolerating others" while we in our ascension spirituality might better understand it as gently moving over and making room in our lives for others-welcoming others into our hearts.

Move over!


Peg said...

So the first thing that I thought about was that of a crowd awaiting an appearance of a star, an idol, a highly respected person. In light of this being Memorial Day and the Ascension we gather around the perimeter of the parade route. We revel in the parade sometimes pushing forward for the best view, but after the parade goes by and we see the main event, it disseminates.
We don't know where it has gone, but we still feel its presence. We carry that feeling through the day and share it with our friends and neighbors through discourse.

Anonymous said...

How beautifully does your notion of "moving over" resound so with our Lord's own personal Easter message to me this Easter Season as He bestows His grace upon me giving me the insight, the love, to take the time (or "move over") to make room each day for His own special gift of His creation of that which comes to be, as He brings two hearts together like one. This already beautiful gift of His is made even more beautiful as I hear His call to come together with the heart that he has joined with mine in grateful, loving prayer nourishing and nurturing His bond of love with another in excelsis prayer and union with God with each other sharing His very presence.

Among the Breathless said...

I remember witnessing a profound "moving over" and the memory has helped me further reflect on how we might sometimes "see" the movement of God in our lives and the choices we can make to make room for God's love.

It was a number of years ago that my nephew, Matthew, died as a young adult - and so sadly took his own life. We in the family who live some distance away traveled down south to be with my brother and his wife to comfort them, and to grieve with them. At one point there were about 20 of us in a fairly small room, waiting for Matthew's body to be prepared for the viewing just inside the church where the services were to be held. About half of the group was family, and the other half of the group were close friends of Matthew's, most of whom drove in from the college where he had attended.

As we waited, my sister-in-law greeted some of Matthew's friends who had just arrived and of those she didn't know she asked them them their names. One of them stood out because he was in a military uniform, and when she inquired as to his name he shook her hand and said softly, "It's Matthew, Ma'am." It seemed to me that the entire room stopped breathing. My sister-in-law paused for a few long seconds but then gave him a very warm smile and said softly in return, "Well, that is a beautiful name. Thank you so much for coming."

My sister-in-law's heart was breaking but she welcomed these new faces into that sore and wounded part of her, and allowed the namesake to touch her deeply. It took courage on her part - and I believe the warm smile and kindness she showed was the "move over" that the Matador suggests.

I think that we have opportunities to "move over" all of the time - in happy times (babies born, wedding feasts) and sad times (the loss of a loved one who leaves a void - but love is still welcomed in). But I think that it is in these poignant times that it is particularly clear that we are believers in the Paschal Mystery - that death does not have victory; that life has the final word. We certainly miss those who have had to leave us, but if we allow new joy to enter in and touch us it is because we do believe in making room in our hearts and allowing them to nestle in.