Remembering Our Call: One Body in Christ

I don't think that it would shock anyone to say that these are highly charged times in the United States and in the Church. Many Catholics find themselves at odds over social and political issues, economic policies, the military and war, the role of the Church in secular society, and on a host of official Church teachings. More and more, it seems, these divisions manifest in bitter arguments and stringent defenses of our positions.

In the wake of Pentecost, though, we may want to take time to reflect upon what joins us together as Christians. Summer is a time when Maryknollers travel to various parishes in the United States, celebrating Mass and inviting parishioners to join in the mission of love to those most in need. It is a reminder, for me, that, despite all of the disagreements, we are a people moved by the love of God to be servants to the world. When we love and serve those outside of our comfort zones, we challenge ourselves to look with compassion, to avoid judgment, and to form relationships rooted in love and respect.

Sometimes the greater challenge is to respect not only those physically distant from us, but also those friends, family members, fellow parishioners and fellow citizens that seem so distant from us on social and political values. When we share the Eucharist, though, we do so in community, one whose members are all struggling to remain open to the Holy Spirit and to live as Jesus lived. Like the disciples, none of us is perfect, but Jesus invites us to the table. We must be willing to join everyone in our family at the table, as well...without exception.