Saturday, May 14, 2016

Discipleship Is Intentional, Real, Joyful, and Not Contrived

This week at the BU Catholic Center has been "Senior Week." Most of the students have returned home for the summer, but the campus is now filled with Seniors and their families. A lot of the Catholic Center students are also around campus this week.  Some of them will be here all summer, either taking classes or working at the University or in the Boston area.  In fact, daily Mass this week has been more crowded than usual.  

Today--Saturday--is kind of my day off. I came in this morning and prayed my Holy Hour and then got to work on an important project--the Wall Street Journal Crossword Puzzle.  I took the hound for a walk, played fetch for interminably long periods of time, and did some spiritual reading.  Joe, our intern, showed up in the morning to pray the Breviary, and then went off to one of the individual school graduations.  Afterwards, he returned and prayed a Holy Hour. 

We had a Mass this evening for the seniors who are graduating tomorrow and for their families.  As I offered that Mass, I thought about what a blessing it is to be with these young men and women. They really love God. For them, Catholicism is not a political agenda or one theory among many theories.  No, they are disciples. They are young men and women who are living discipleship. It's such a cool thing to walk into our little house chapel and almost always find someone in there praying.  

After Mass this evening, a small group of about a dozen undergrads and our intern and I cooked dinner together.  It was a very enjoyable evening, talking, laughing, and eating. This to me is Catholicism.  During this day, we prayed together, offered Mass together, dined together, conversed together, and laughed together.  At the end of our meal, we gathered around our humble statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary and chanted the Regina Caeli together.

Nothing in this post is particular earth-shattering. It's just a reminder that the Holy Spirit is still at work in the life of the Church. He is still building the Church and making all things new in Christ. He is still drawing souls up and into the Divine Life. What makes me most grateful is that it is all real. The friendship, the prayer, the devotion, the worship, and everything else . . . it is real. It is not contrived or some sort of commercialization of the Faith. It is real. It is human. It's fun, but it is also substantial. Before, during, and after Mass tonight, at dinner tonight, at Holy Hour today, and in a thousand other small gestures that are part of our life together, what is obvious is that it is all real and all truly human. Grace doesn't destroy nature. It builds upon it. 

Today we lived together the mystery of discipleship. It's intentional, but it is not contrived, manufactured, or gimmicky.  Today, I was surrounded by young men and women who love each other, pray with each other, eat with each other, serve with each other, and laugh with each other.  They are living life together, but they are living that life in Christ. Today is the Solemnity of Pentecost. The Holy Spirit breathes life into the Church. Today, I was privileged to inhale that breath.

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