Posted by: fvbcdm | January 25, 2014

Feast of Saint Francis de Sales (24 January 2014)

In the gospel reading for Mass today, on the commemoration of Saint Francis de Sales, Our Lord tells us, “You have not chosen me; I have chosen you.”  And then he goes on to say, “Remain in my love.”  These are beautiful utterances of Our Lord.  If we are Christians, if we have the gift of faith in the divinity of Our Divine Lord, it is because he has given us that gift of faith.  That is what he means by saying “I have chosen you.”  We might well meditate upon the fact that millions of people on this planet do not know Our Lord, or believe in him, or love him.  But we do.  And we do because he has freely chosen US, saying “Without me, you can do nothing.”  There are those who believe that when we die, we die like the animals, and that’s the end of our existence.  We know better.  We know that, as Saint Paul tells us, “The eye has not seen, nor has the ear heard, nor has it entered into the heart of man to imagine what God has prepared for those who love him.”

And then we can meditate on those words of Jesus “remain in my love.”  I find it helpful to envision his love like a physical thing which surrounds us, comforts us, protects us.  Like a beautiful, comfortable home suddenly opened to a homeless man or woman who can come in from life in the streets.  Or like a warm bed with a good mattress where we can find rest and warmth and comfort after having to sleep under a bridge.

Saint Francis de Sales whom we celebrate today, is said to have once seen a sick and drunken man on the street.  He looked at him sadly and said to those with him, “There, but for the grace of God, go I.” Those of us who have ever been involved in prison ministry know what that can mean.  We have the tremendous gift of faith; we have an education whereby we can earn a living; we have comfortable homes, enough to eat and drink, clothing to keep us dry and warm in the rain and the cold.  Why?  Because of God’s care for us.  We did not choose him; he chose us.  Now it is up to us to remain in his love and praise and thank him for his goodness to us by our lives of obedience: If you love me, keep my commandments!  Thank you for seeking God’s truth.  God bless you.  Father Victor Brown, O.P.

Note:  This is a CDM composed by Father Brown in the past.


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