It's kind of exciting that I'm getting 20-50 page-views per day now. Gives me a little hope now as things aren't exactly peachy keen in my personal life.
Any ways, I decided to go on my lunch break Friday to a parish that is a 5-minute walk from my workplace. The best part is that because it is a parish whose priestly order has a charism that focuses on redemption and the offering of sacraments that was contrary to the challenges in the Church at the time of its foundation. So They offer confession before almost all their major masses and every one on Sunday (Thank the Lord! Here's an order and a parish that knows about the worthy redemption of the Sacrament of the Eucharist!!!!!).
So obviously I went for confession, but also I stayed for Mass because I wanted to offer prayers and my spiritual work of being there to the Lord concerning an intention in a minor, but personal important spiritual conflict I am having, and feel that I know what the outcome will be based on a key statement.
The homily was given by the chaplain from my workplace. The Gospel reading for Friday, May 25 in the Novus Ordo from the CCCB lectionary for Canada, was from John 21:15-19. Nutshell version: Jesus wants Peter to be a leader and step up and spread the mission of His Church but also he hints that he will die not by his own hands or naturally (that is he will undergo the Passion, Death and Resurrection). He does a well-known reversal of when Peter denies Christ 3 times in the Passion: Christ asks him 3 times ``Do you love me?" and of course Peter says yes, but Christ replies "Feed my lambs."
The chaplain decided to focus on this famous reversal, speaking about the theme of Love. His ending on the topic was a little weak, and personally I felt that the priest could have gone a bit more into explaining about the virtue of Charity (which is also called Love) or explaining more about the highest level of Love which the trinity expressed perfectly: Divine Love, or Caritas. You can read Pope Benedict's Encyclical on that Caritas in Veritate (Love in Truth) with regard to that.
However, what struck me from that day's homily, was that he likely used a recent tragedy as a literary device in order to emphasize a point about the Love of Christ. The summation is that a young man, who fell in love with a woman, was rejected. He then proceeded with a firearm to her, threatens her or someone else, and in the end he shot himself. I thought I heard "students" or "student" in the homily so after an internet search, this is the story that matched the most times in links. The news item is from India and it is fairly recent, having happened last week involving young university students:
After relating the story, the priest said that yes, the man "loved" the woman, but is this really love? That question, got me thinking a bit, and I can conclude that, no it's not. Love should not end in a person shooting one's self, and further love cannot be present in forcing another person to do one's bidding or express emotions not there. Instead, all that is present is submission to a more dominant person, fear, and unhappiness. The main point that I remember the priest speaking from this, is that the love of the Trinity has to be present at the core of us as Catholics (I think he used the Holy Spirit. It would make sense as some priests and a doctoral student I know has said that the Holy Spirit is Love.). If our actions are devoid of true, Christian love, well .... I cannot remember what the priest said about that, but I can say that obviously if faith without works is dead, the reverse can also be (and in Catholicism must be,) true. If part of our faith is that our Trinity expresses the most perfect form of love, Caritas, and we ourselves are vessels for the Holy Spirit from Baptism and must carry out God/Christ's Love as part of our Catholic life, then yes, Love/the Theological Virtue of Charity/Caritas must be at the very core of what we do as Catholics (how we do it, though, and how this teaching has been misapplied, is another kettle of fish).
It was a nice little piece of mind that day, concerning that conflict I had and still do on my mind. I pray and hope in that conflict that the Theological virtue of Love will be present. It was definitely my verbal spiritual nourishment, in addition to the ULTIMATE spiritual nourishment found in the Eucharist of our Blessed Lord as his Glorified body present on Earth.
Hoped you enjoyed what I have shared, Pax. YCRCM.