Words of St Paul

Dear Friends,

Last weekend in my homily I spoke on the second reading, the short passage from Saint Paul to the Galatians. I was inspired to do so by the reflections of Bishop Barron on the theological impact of Saint Paul’s words in those verses.

This week our second reading comes from Paul’s letter to the Colossians. Once again, Saint Paul is speaking most profoundly and intently on the person of Jesus Christ, the reality which is Christianity, the reconciliation of all through the Blood of His Cross.

Paul is complex and deep. He compacts much meaning into his writings. This section is believed to be an early Christian hymn used by the Colossians in liturgy and incorporated into Paul’s letter. It acknowledges Jesus as the image of the invisible God through Whom all of creation, visible and invisible, came into being. It affirms that Jesus is the first born from the dead; that He is the head of the Church, His Body. It attests that Jesus is God and the one who made peace through His own Blood.

My friends, Jesus suffered death at the hands of all the negative forces of sin, division, hatred, evil, and opposition in this world. But God raised Him from the dead. He is victor and His victory is given to us through His Mystical Body, His Church. Paul tells us not just to listen to Jesus, not just to follow Jesus but to live in Jesus ~ in the new creation, in the grace of redemption. That is what it means to be a member of Jesus’ Mystical Body ~ living in Jesus.

We belong to Jesus our Head and He belongs to us His body. Faith is so much more than a matter of belief, doctrine or moral principles for good living. Jesus is ALIVE, He is risen, He has conquered. We live in Him. We share His victory, His glory, His power as we travel through this valley of tears.

No one can take this from us, but we can fail to accept it or to make full use of it. May this reality, living in Jesus, help us to be Good Samaritans, treating one another and everyone with mercy.

God bless you, God love you,

Monsignor McCulken

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