Study: Recall the people in life have loved us unconditionally. How did their love help you change and grow?
Pray: Ask the Lord for the grace to recognize the people in our midst we are called to love.
Serve: Love takes many forms. What can I do today for another person out of love?
For the last few months the eyes of the world have directed to the words and actions of Pope Francis. It has been a time of extensive media coverage on the Church and its message of hope to a new generation.
During this time many people have experienced the rich treasure of Roman Catholicism. The history, symbolism, and global significance have helped provide a deeper understanding of the internal structure of the Church.
Many people have responded to the Pope’s teaching and example. It is an exciting time to participate in the Church, and I personally am renewed and energized in my desire to grow in my vocation to the priesthood – even in the midst of transition and change.
Change is a part of life. Through our experiences and encounters we develop and discover new perspectives and resources within our lives. Change happens when we open our hearts to those around us and put into action our new insights.
In the Gospel Jesus states that to love him means to keep his commandments. There are two:
1. Love God
2. Love one another.
It is important to note that these commands are not just about being busy. To love means to be in relationship with others; love invites us to grow in our awareness and understanding for one another. This knowledge leads to greater respect and value for all life.
In the Gospel love is a verb. It must be acted upon, practiced, and carried out in all parts of life. To love means to work at a relationship – and thus be open to spend the time and effort necessary.
Yet when we open our hearts to love we are changed. As we experience love, as we work at it, we discover that our hearts get stretched. We become challenged to grow, to make room so that we can love more deeply, more completely.
Jesus promises that we will have help. As we open our lives to the power of love, the Spirit will come to help us and guide us. Transformed by love, we trust that God will continue to direct us, until the cycle of love and change brings us one day to the Kingdom of Heaven.
This post was first published on May 20, 2014.