September 23, 2012
25th Sunday in Ordinary Time
“Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me; and whoever receives me, receives not me but the One who sent me.”
What do we believe about God, anyway? Fortunately we have the gift of divine Wisdom to help us understand that God is the Father and source of all life. Most especially, we believe that God has directly created you and every human soul with a plan to receive his grace and thus live freely here below and forever with him and all those who believe and live God’s love and truth.
In today’s Gospel reading Jesus Christ speaks to our hearts of the importance of protecting every human life so that they may grow in God’s grace, love and wisdom. To make his point he takes a child from among his disciples and places him in their midst and puts his arm around the child and says: “Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me; and whoever receives me, receives not me but the One who sent me.” Mk. 9:37. We are blessed by so many parents, teachers and catechists who have received us in the name of Jesus Christ and have taught us the true faith in love.
Jesus established his Church on St. Peter and the other Apostles and called them to share in his ministry of teaching about God and his Kingdom of truth and love. We are called to continual learning of our faith and grow in our effectiveness of sharing it with others, with the guidance of the successors of the Apostles, the Pope and the Bishops of today, and the power of true love found in Christ’s community.
50 years ago, October 11th, 1962, the Pope and the Catholic Bishops united to him, opened the Second Vatican II Council with prayer to the Holy Spirit. The Pope and the Bishops of every nation met inRome,Vatican City, which is the central location of Christ’s Church, to address the concerns of the Church and the world.
In the opening Message to Humanity, the Council Fathers issued this: “The Fathers of the Council to All Men: We take great pleasure in sending to all men and nations a message concerning that well-being, love and peace which were brought into the world by Christ Jesus, the Son of the living God, and entrusted to the Church.
“For this is the reason why, at the direction of the most blessed Pope John XXIII, we successors of the apostles have gathered here, joined in single hearted prayer with Mary the Mother of Jesus, and forming one apostolic body headed by the successor of Peter.
“May the Face of Christ Jesus Shine Out: In this assembly, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we wish to inquire how we ought to renew ourselves, so that we may be found increasingly faithful to the gospel of Christ.”
This process of renewal continues in our everyday life as individual Christians and as a Church as the Holy Spirit leads us into new insights and new approaches in living out the natural and supernatural law of God’s love and truth for creation and salvation. Catholic teachers and catechists help in this mission.
20 years ago October 11, 1992, Pope John Paul II approved and promulgated the Catechism of the Catholic Church which is the norm of helping all pastors, teachers and catechists to summarize and systematically pass on the faith.
The Catechism begins by quoting the Gospel of John, “Father…this is eternal life, that they may know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” Jn 17:3 It also quotes fromSt. Paul’s First Letter to Timothy 2:3-4: “God our Savior desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of truth.”
As we prepare for the Year of Faith which begins Oct. 11, 2012 to celebrate these two important anniversaries, we want to honor all those teachers and catechists who faithfully taught us about Jesus Christ and his plan of salvation.
Father Thomas McCabe