Monday, November 25, 2013

A...Mystery...We...May...(choose to)...Ignore


Another year has almost passed. All passing's must be celebrated for healthy living. That is why at this time we are in the midst of celebrating the ending of The Liturgical year. In the liturgical year, we take 365 days to reflect on the gift that comes to us in every moment, and nanosecond we are privileged to live. As we think of a second, or any given moment it is so sudden that we blink and it is gone. No big deal! How wrong we are. In each and every moment, every nanosecond, The Infinite, The Unknown, The Unknowable, is perfectly hidden and revealed. We can take each moment for granted and look to a future event to give us what is present, in this present moment. In this now moment comes to me all that I need. Many times because the "now moment" is not giving me what I want, I just blow it off and turn my attention to something else. I am even expecting that "something else, or somewhere else" to give me that which will never bring me peace, or happiness. As it was, so it is, and ever shall be. The Liturgical year's liturgical celebrations as it were, takes the mystery hidden and revealed in each sacramental moment, and does what with it? It extends, stretches the moment, through minutes, days, and weeks so are afforded the opportunity to not only look at, but be lead to see the ever newness of The Mystery, God. No two seconds, no two moments are the same. We may think so, but that thinking needs to be challenged. Without that ongoing challenge we will live a life-less, boring, self-centered, selfish life. Actually we do not live, we just exist. Then we are driven to look for a scapegoat to blame. We will want, we will need this scapegoat to carry the blame rather than take responsibility for our own inaction. "Growth begins, when blaming ends" (Powell). Darn that!!!
                        Our Liturgical celebrations, given a chance, afford us the opportunity, and the means to journey into the mystery of our lives  and there, encounter The Presence, The Mystery within. We are reminded that liturgy is what? (Before you read on, how do you answer that question? What is your personal understanding of the action you take part in each time you gather with other members of your faith community? Your understanding will color, for good or for ill, your participation in the liturgy.) Liturgy we are now given to understand, and accept, is "the WORK of the people." It is the whole community gathering together to honor and worship their God, present in Word, Sacrifice, and Sacrament. Each is invited, by our reception of the Sacrament of Baptism, to come and celebrate their individual and collective participation in The Priesthood of Jesus, The Christ. Liturgy is not about our relationship with Jesus, but with Jesus The Christ.  Jesus The Christ, is the historical Jesus, Who has journeyed through death, Resurrection, Ascension, and now through His Spirit dwells not with (The Historical Jesus), but WITHIN each one of us. The Christ knows, from His lived experience as The Human Being, what it means to suffer, die, be buried, then rise, and ascend to send His Spirit to dwell within our depths. Jesus, The Christ, The One Whose Body we are called to be, and Whose priesthood we are consecrated to share in each liturgical gathering. This is just one of the wonder-full, mystery participation gifts that we are gifted with by our Baptism, but is either taken for granted or just ignored. As a result our participation in the liturgy is life-less, or nonexistent.
                           If The Mystery within our depths does not connect with the presence of The Mystery hidden and revealed in each celebration is there a reason? I wonder.  Is it because we do not  see our everyday life connected with our liturgical life? Do we see in each and every moment fodder for our next Eucharistic celebration? Each moment we live, we are encountering The Paschal Mystery we have been baptized into, but we do not consciously name the deep, hidden, reality of the moment. In each Eucharistic celebration as we proclaim, The Mystery of Faith, we are proclaiming publicly what has been so often a private experience. That is why our preparation for each coming celebration begins as we walk out the door of the place we have just worshipped in. All of our life experiences, no matter how "ordinary" they are, go into the new creation of who we are. This "new creation" will be brought, through a response to grace, to celebrate the newness of its creation. In the Sacred Meal celebration. there is a deepening, a solidifying of the relationship between Creator and creation. Liturgy celebration and the life we lead, then are one. The same Christ is present, and encountered in both. What a gift this liturgical year is. It gives us 365 days, 8,765.812 hours, and 31,556,926 seconds, so we can choose in what timeframe we choose to delve into The Mystery, to find that which will give an ever deepening meaning to the life we live. In this way we will not have "liturgy without soul." Our every moment soul journey will be an unending source of light, life, and love to be celebrated in The Liturgical celebration. Which leads to what.....???