Posted by: fvbcdm | October 25, 2011

Feast of Saint Tabitha (25 Oct 2011)


My room faces east. Slightly north-east, to be exact. As I compose this message, it’s 8:35 a.m., and the sun is already high in the sky and flooding this part of the world with brightness and beauty.  I mentioned this in my homily at Mass this morning since the Scriptures use light so often as a symbol of God and his greatness.  In fact, Our Lord says in the gospel: “I am the Light of the World.”  He means, of course, that he is to all of creation what the sun is to our solar system.
After Mass, one of our priests here who is a native of Quebec in Canada commented on the difference between the amount of light on October 25 in Houston and in Quebec. And then he jokingly talked about how nice it is to have ALL THAT LOVELY SNOW up there to put one into the spirit of Christmas.  As far as I am concerned, they are most welcome to all that lovely snow.  I think snow is very nice—on Christmas cards.  And after eight years in the seminary in Minnesota, Illinois, and Iowa, I am very happy never to see it again.  Or very rarely.  I remember once, in New Orleans, we had a very rare snowfall which covered the ground with about an inch or two of snow and stayed there for several hours.  One of our young priests gathered some of the snow and packed it around a statue of Saint Dominic in front of our church of the same name, to make it look like a snow-man.  Then some of the parish teenagers rather irreverently put a beer can into the upraised hand of the Saint Dominic snow-man and took pictures of Saint Dominic, apparently recommending Budweiser to the passersby.
We are probably all aware that in the countries of the far north, like Finland and northern Sweden and Norway and Russia, in the long winters with little or no sunlight, there is a problem with depression and alcoholism.  Some people up there even have sun lamps in their homes to supply what is lacking in their natural need for light and brightness. Fortunately, we don’t have that problem in Houston.  Nor do we have the problem of a lack of Christ, the Light of the World, unless we deliberately exclude him from our own personal world and solar system.  But just as we don’t want the depressing and darkening atmosphere of the dead of winter in the far north, so we don’t want a lack of our Divine Lord and his love, truth, and beauty in our world.  One of the documents of the Second Vatican Council which have so illuminated the world of our time is called “Lumen Gentium”—the Light of the Nations.  And as it quotes that tremendous document, the Catechism of the Catholic Church quotes a favorite expression of the Church Fathers: “The Church has no other light than Christ’s . . . the Church is like the moon, all its light reflected from the sun (who is Christ).” Thank you for seeking God’s truth.  God bless you.  Father Victor Brown, O.P.


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