Friday – Memorial of Saint Clare, Virgin
The disciples left behind rather normal lives, fishing, collecting taxes, among other things and they did it all in order to follow Jesus. As we here in Matthew’s Gospel today now comes the hard part. The kingdom that Jesus speaks about will not be established by might but by suffering and death. Jesus is not a political or military leader. His power is not to take things by force. His way is not the way of the world. It is to die to self. It is to let go of what the world think is important. It is to grab onto a relationship with God and not let go.
Following Jesus and dying to self, letting go, is not an easy task. The cross presents itself to us daily in many different ways. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer once put it “Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate.”
So we are called today and every day to find that place deep within each one of us, where God is calling us, through the paschal mystery, into a relationship of love – and it is that relationship that holds the promise of a joyful, rich, and never-ending life in the kingdom.
Have a holy and blessed Friday everyone and may the Passion of Jesus Christ be always in your heart!
Father Paul Fagan, C.P.