Friday, August 16, 2013

The Mystical Chalice (2 of 2)

St. Philip Neri (1515-1595), a wonderful priest and my beloved Patron Saint, often referred to the devil as the “Prince of Misery” since in his miserable state of [freely chosen] separation from God he now spends his efforts and cunning trying to convince people on earth to focus on the regrets of the past and fears of the future, trying to trap them in an illusory world and plunge them into sharing his own dreadful unhappiness.

But Jesus, the Lord of Love, invites us to embrace the truth and reality of the present and of God’s All-Sufficient Love for us! (St. Philip Neri appropriately went on to become, as John Paul the Great called him, “the Saint and Prophet of Joy” and one of the great heroes of the sixteenth century Catholic Reformation. The truth of God’s Love is attractive and when embraced and shared produces in us the spiritual fruit of joy!)

Like a chalice, created for a very specific purpose (and not permitted to be used for anything but the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass), we were made for God - to “hold” Jesus, the Author of Life and our true life, within us. We were also made to be consecrated to God, “set apart” for Him, and offered up to the Father with Jesus, poured out and consumed in a sweet sacrifice of love, praise and thanksgiving in joyful communion with all the Holy Angels, Saints and the entire Church. Consecration to God is not only for religious; all the baptized belong to God!

At every Mass, where we participate in Christ’s Supreme Sacrifice of Love for us, let us renew the gift of ourselves to the Father with Him, becoming “empty but beautiful chalices” able to receive the incomparable Gift of Himself and His Holy Spirit, so that we may share in His Communion with the Father for all eternity. +Amen.

+Br. Philip Maria Allen, CFR
St. Felix Friary
Yonkers, NY
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