The last couple of weeks I have been talking about rumoring, gossip, rash judgment, detraction, and calumny. We now know that they are all prohibited by the 8th commandment and that God in His infinite wisdom did this because He knows the potential that our gift of language has for the good and conversely for evil. These behaviors do not build up anything and do not solve any problems, but only make them worse as they divide and tear the community apart. So we all need to make resolutions with the Lord to build-up rather than tear down.
We build-up primarily through the principle gospel virtue of CHARITY, which is not just donating money to the poor. Charity is our participation in the love of God. Charity is giving without expecting in return, that is the way that God gives and loves. We try to respect each person as a child of God, and for that reason alone is worthy of my respect and help. I believe it goes without saying, that gossiping etc. is very disrespectful and so flies in the face of the Charity we are called to practice by the example and teaching of our Lord Jesus.
That then brings us to our mission statement, “Meet Christ, Follow Christ, Bear Christ.” In order to understand and appreciate the teaching and example of our Lord, we have to know him. So we need to meet him. This is done through prayer and reflection on the Gospels where we encounter his living word. Those who have been watching the “Lectio Divina” series on “formed.org” understand how we do both of these at the same time: reflecting and praying as we do “Lectio Divina”, so it is a privileged and amazing place to meet Christ. Our knowledge of Christ will convince and motivate us to Charity, and it is in the practice of this virtue by each of us that forms the unity and goodness of our parish—something worth striving for.