I hope your New Year is going well—it really does seem to be speeding right along. As we celebrated Martin Luther King this past week I was reading a work written in the middle of the last century called Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis. Part of that book resonated with the Reverend King’s most famous speech, where he spoke of the Christian “dream” for humanity and our realization of our unity and oneness which the Lord commended to us in his prayer to the Father: Ut unum sint – that they all might be one.
Human beings . . . look separate because you see them walking about separately. But then, we are so made that we can see only the present moment. If we could see the past, then of course it would look different. For there was a time when every man was part of his mother, and (earlier still) part of his father as well: and when they were part of his grandparents. If you could see humanity spread out in time, as God sees it, it would not look like a lot of separate things dotted about. It would look like one single growing thing—rather like a very complicated tree. Every individual would appear connected with every other. And not only that. Individuals are not really separate from God any more than from one another. Every man, woman, and child all over the world is feeling and breathing at this moment only because God, so to speak, is ‘keeping him going.’\
~ C.S. Lewis [1898-1963], Mere Christianity, Chapter 27
In our prayers this year, let us remember to pray for unity as Christ calls us to unity, in Faith, in Charity, in God. And let us re-commit ourselves to working for unity in love in our own relations, within our own families, parish, neighborhoods, and workplaces. Mother Teresa, who the Holy Father Pope Francis canonized this past September reminds us: “It is easy to love the people far away. It is not always easy to love those close to us. It is easier to give a cup of rice to relieve hunger than to relieve the loneliness and pain of someone unloved in our own home. Bring love into your home for this is where our love for each other must start.”
~ St Teresa of Calcutta
Love and Peace,
Fr. Liam Quinlan