From the Desk of the D.R.E.: Living A Life Of Unity With God
“Always put the toilet seat down.” “Don’t sleep with other women.” “I shop and do the dishes; she cooks.” These are some “rules for marriage” people around the parish office shared. They share a common goal: to give oneself to unite in love. Whether we experience faithful or broken marriages; we all desire the perfect unity in love that Holy Matrimony lived well points toward. Perfect loving unity is a universal human longing that only God can completely satisfy.
At the Last Supper, Jesus prayed ardently, “Holy Father...that they may be one, even as we are one.” “...that they may all be one; even as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be in us... that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and thou in me, that they may become perfectly one...” John 17:11, 20-23 Then, He sweat blood to unify His human will with His divine will to freely give His complete gift of self. His gift on the Cross, triumphant Resurrection and Ascension in glory make possible the loving union of God and each human soul.
At the Last Supper, Jesus tells His Apostles the way to loving unity, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” ”He who has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me; and he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” John 14:15, 21 God gave Ten through Moses. Jesus gives Five through His Bride, the Church. He gave her permission to speak for Him (Lk 10:16) and to give rules (Mt 16:18, 18:18-19). I submit to you, as a fellow repentant sinner who is striving to be a saint, that these 5 Church Precepts are rules for loving unity, with Our Risen Lord Jesus Christ and as His Body:
1. Attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days while resting from servile labor
Do I guard the time for loving unity with God and His Church? Jesus invites - and commands - us to make the one
perfect eternal sacrifice with Him, to the Father, for the salvation of the world at Mass each Sunday and Holy Day. Why? Through Baptism, we are united to Jesus Christ, as members of his Body – anointed priest, prophet and king. You are required at every Sunday and Holy Day Mass for the Body of Christ to offer the one perfect eternal sacrifice. This is why St. Paul can say, “...I complete what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church”. Col. 1:24 Christ’s Paschal
Mystery (suffering, death, resurrection and ascension) won the grace for your eternal salvation (perfect union in Heaven)—but that grace is applied to your soul through your participation in His Paschal Mystery through the Sacraments.
Do I guard time for leisure with my family? As a student, I sadly procrastinated my homework until Sunday—and I missed out on rest with my family. As a mom, I guard the time better: we go to Mass and youth group, visit family and friends, bike, swim, pray, play, nap, serve, read, take a walk, talk, dream and laugh. We need time to be together. It’s ok to say “no” to other things.
2. Receive the Sacrament of Penance at least once a year
3. Receive the Sacrament of the Eucharist at least once a year during the Easter Season
4. Observe the days of fasting and abstinence established by the Church
5. Help provide for the needs of the Church
Am I living the life of unity with God now and making my soul ready for its fullness in Heaven? The alternative now, and in eternity, is loneliness and restless emptiness.
Liz Alonzo - Director of Religious Education