A quick quote from the patron of our diocese, Saint Augustine, from his Discourse on Psalm 121
“May peace reign in your walls. O Jerusalem, built as a city with compact unity,” peace in your strength, peace in your love! For your strength is your love. Listen to the Song of Songs:
“Love is strong as death” (8:6). What wonderful words, brethren!….
Who can resist death? People resist flames, floods, steel; they resist tyrants and kings; let death come and who can resist it? There is nothing stronger. Love alone can match up to its strength. It can be said that love is strong as death. Because love kills what we used to be to make us become what as yet we were not, it carries out in us a work of death. Saint Paul died this death. He said: “The world is crucified to me and I to the world” (Galatians 6:14), and those to whom he said: “You have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3) died this death.
Love is strong as death…. let peace, therefore, be in your strength, Jerusalem; let peace be in your love. And by this strength, love, peace “may prosperity be in your towers” (Psalm 121:7), that is to say, on your heights…. Profusion of delights, countless riches, this is the God who is one, this is He with whom all this city’s inhabitants hold communion. This is He who will be our abundance in the city of Jerusalem.
As you might imagine, as I passed a wakeful night in Paris earlier this month, the thought of God’s love for his people and our reliance on Him as we faced terrorism and uncertainty, kept my mind reeling. As I prayed, I asked for the Lord to give us hope and trust in Him.
Our Lord loves us with such love—love which conquers death, and robs evil of its seeming victory. Our Lord has made us to share life with Him, and he calls us to share in that life even as we deal in the challenges we face in this passing world. We celebrated Christ, King of the Universe last Sunday, this week we embark on Advent, where we greet that King come in seeming weakness, but carrying within himself the seed to destroy death for ever.
Please continue to keep me in your prayers, as I keep you in mine, and one day we shall join in prayer at that Paschal Feast of heaven, in the joy and the love of God.
Love and His Peace,