There are many folks around us looking for hope. Maybe you're one of them. Some have lost loved ones or are dealing with a terminal illness, others are alienated from family members, or have seriously messed up their lives having made bad choices, or have faced daunting challenges they have had no control over such as a loss of a job. They long for some comfort and help to get them through their despair. Having neighbors, friends and loved ones who reach out in a critical time such as these is so very important. That is what community is all about, and there's a lot of goodness evident here in Duxbury and beyond, which offers hope.
We, Catholic Christians, have a fundamental reason for hope in a God who has gone out of His way to abide with us and share His divine life with us - Jesus Christ. We experience His power/grace in a particular way through Word and Sacrament. Jeremiah the prophet speaks for the Lord when he wrote to the Israelite exiles in Babylon who longed for hope in their own circumstances of suffering. And, he speaks to us as well in our own time: "I know well the plans I have in mind for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare, not for woe, plans to give you a future full of hope. When you call me, when you go to pray to me, I will listen to you. When you look for me, you will find me. Yes, when you seek me with all your heart, you will find me with you, says the Lord." (Jeremiah 29:11 - 14a) That's a passage of sacred scripture you might want to put on your refrigerator.
Who/what do you place your hope in? Pope Francis in his Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel), highlights the principle proclamation of the Gospel in this succinct, but profound statement: "Jesus Christ loves you; he gave his life to save you; and now he is living at your side every day to enlighten, strengthen and free you." (#164) That's worthy of the refrigerator too! You may want to read it over again… Jesus is our companion with whom we are invited to have a close, personal relationship. He is truly our savior who seeks to lift us from all that will destroy us and give us hope. Pope Francis challenges us as Church (you and me) to make this proclamation known at all times, in all circumstances and to all people. The treasure we have in Jesus is something which has to be shared, especially for those who need hope! Is there some way you are being called to give someone hope? Ok, go ahead…
God bless you!