Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Let your light shine in joy: Daily Mass Homily--Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

           One of God’s great gifts to us is light.  It was one of His first creations and we would be lost without it.  We can see the gift of light in a variety of ways.  Imagine a beautiful sunrise (not that I’ve seen many of these), or sunset.  Picture the child whose nightlight scares away the monsters.  Or consider on the celebration of the Easter Vigil in which the Paschal candle is processed in through the dark and then everyone’s candles are lit.
            Moses face was actually illumined after speaking with God.  He radiated God’s love so much so the Hebrews had him wear a veil.  We, too, are called to shine in the same way.
            In this Year of Faith, Pope Francis has given us his first encyclical: Lumen Fidei—Light of Faith.  Now some of you gave me homework assignments while I was a student here and others even gave my Dad homework at the old Cathedral.  I would ask you to do a homework assignment: read Lumen Fidei.  I have been working through this slowly and it is nothing short of enlightening.  In this work, Francis declares: “The light of Christ shines, as in a mirror, upon the face of Christians…”
            One way people can perceive this light in us is if we exude his joy.  In one of his homilies to the young people at World Youth Day our Holy Father said, “Dear friends, if we walk in hope, allowing ourselves to be surprised by the new wine which Jesus offers us, we have joy in our hearts and we cannot fail to be witnesses of this joy.  Christians are joyful, they are never gloomy.  God is at our side…Christians cannot be pessimists!”
            Are you a joyful person?  Does your joy radiate like light to others?  My prayer for you and your religious community this day is that the light of your faith may shine.  May it shine through the joyful way you approach your vocation and serve God and neighbor.

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