“My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person, he believed in me.” ~Jim Valvano
Today is the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ. It is also Father’s Day. Some of you may wonder which one of the two I will choose to highlight on this day. Am I going to “go for” the secular holiday or am I going to stick with the Church solemnity? My response: “Why not do both?!”
Our Father loved us so much that He sent His Son into the world. Jesus was born for us, as one of us, so that He might free us from sin and death. In order to do that, He died upon the cross and rose from the dead three days later, effectively destroying death and restoring life.
On the night before He died, Jesus gave us the great gift of the Eucharist — His Body and Blood — so that we could be nourished on this earth as we journey toward the Kingdom.
There are many ways to nourish someone. The most obvious, of course, is to eat and drink. However, we are also nourished emotionally and spiritually by a host of others in our lives. The primary nourishers in our lives are our mothers and fathers.
Our fathers are charged with the responsibility of caring for us, nurturing us, and guiding us. They are called to teach us what is and will be important in our lives. The way to teach best is by example.
Fathers are called to teach love by being people of love. The love that fathers show to their wives and to their children will go a long way in teaching their children how to love. The mercy and patience and understanding that they are called to emulate also go a long way in shaping their sons and daughters.
Are all fathers perfect? Of course not. None of us are perfect. Do all fathers deserve our love and respect. Of course. Everyone deserves love and respect.
For all the times our fathers may get it wrong, bear patiently and forgive lovingly. For all the times they get it right, be grateful and show your appreciation and love.
Eternal thanks and praise to our Heavenly Father for loving us into existence and calling us back home at the end of our days.
FAITH ACTION: Pray for all fathers and fathers-to-be, that God’s love may come into their lives and that they may be shining examples of His love to all.