When the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, and one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” He said to him, “’You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved. http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations
There was a time when I thought Ignatius Loyola’s “Suscipe” was a prayer of ascetic daring. It was as though I had to prove my love to God by showing what I might forgo. At some point, however, it changed. It became a profession of love for God. Love of God and neighbor is not about performing slavish acts of ritual observance and obliged charity. It is about us communicating our experience of love to others.
Is it that the less selfish we become, the more clearly we see God’s love in the world? Is it that when we love others, we get a glimpse of God’s love for us? Perhaps. Regardless, the natural response of feeling loved is to love in return. When we attempt to love God in return, we may just find ourselves caring for our neighbors…not as we would like, but as we would care for Christ.
—Fr. Paul Lickteig, S.J. serves as parochial vicar at St. Xavier Church, Cincinnati OH.
More than ever I find myself in the hands of God. This is what I have wanted all my life from my youth. But now there is a difference; the initiative is entirely with God. It is indeed a profound spiritual experience to know and feel myself so totally in God’s hands.
—Pedro Arrupe, SJPlease share the Good Word with your friends!