Photo by Claudio Schwarz on Unsplash
Granted, it’s a tough assignment, the original assignment. I get that.
Love – Lord help us, could we not have been assigned something easier,
like astrophysics or quantum mechanics?
But no – love those you cannot love.
Love those who are poor and broken and fouled and dirty
and sick with sores.
Love those who wish to strike you on both cheeks.
Love the blowhard, the pompous ass, the arrogant liar.
Find the Christ in each heart, even those.
Preach the Gospel and only if necessary talk about it.
Be the Word.
It is easy to advise and pronounce and counsel
and suggest and lecture;
it is not easy to do what must be done
without sometimes shrieking.
Bring love like a bright weapon against the dark.
The Rabbi did not say build churches, or retreat houses,
or secure a fleet of cars for general use, or convene conferences,
or issue position papers.
He was pretty blunt about the hungry and the naked and the sick.
He was not reasonable; we forget this.
The Church is not a reasonable idea.
The Church should be a verb.
When it is only a noun it is not what the Founder asked of us.
Let us pray that we are ever after dissolving
the formal officious arrogant thing that wants to rise,
and ever fomenting the contradictory revolutionary
countercultural thing that could change life on this planet.
It could, you know.
Let’s try again today.
And so: Amen.
Brian Doyle, 1956 – 2017, Catholic author from Oregon
God has put all things under the authority of Christ
and has made him head over all things for the benefit of the church.
And the church is his body; it is made full and complete by Christ,
who fills all things everywhere with himself.