“Love has no age, no limit; and no death.” ~ John Galsworthy
As a priest for over thirty-six years now, I have heard the famous wedding reading from the First Letter of Paul to the Corinthians (1 Corinthians 12:31-13:8a) so many times that I could recite it from memory, maybe even backwards. That does not mean that I like it any less than the first time I ever heard it. It is a remarkable piece of writing from St. Paul that addresses the very heart of love. Many people think that it is about romantic love. St. Paul, however, is going much deeper than that. He is addressing the entire early Christian community and asking them to be more loving and more Christ-like.
In our modern world, we often live by slogans. One of the more recent slogans/movements is “What would Jesus do?”, better known as WWJD. What would Jesus do? The answer is right in front of our eyes: love. That’s what it’s about. That’s what it’s always been about.
I think I have shared this once before either here or in my daily blog. I really enjoy the Joshua series of books written by Fr. Joseph Girzone. I also enjoyed the film adaptation of one of his books, Joshua: A Parable for Today. Toward the end of the movie, Joshua (Jesus) meets with the pope. As they discuss things, Joshua makes a statement about the world: “The world has become such a frightening place. There’s so much anger and not enough love. Deep in the hearts of so many people there’s an emptiness that nothing in this world can fill. And that emptiness makes it impossible for them to love.”
The pope acknowledges that the world is in turmoil and asks Joshua what to do. Joshua tells the pope, “Remind them that I love them, that I died for them. Tell them that my love is real and that if they open their hearts to it, I will fill that emptiness and they will be able to love one another. That’s the message. It hasn’t changed.”
That exchange always brings tears to my eyes. In my many years as a priest, I have seen people, over and over again, searching for peace and not finding it because they were too afraid to look within, to acknowledge their own need, and to allow the Lord into their heart, to allow the Lord to love them.
Love is, truly, what it’s all about. Love is the same yesterday, today, and forever or, as Galsworthy would say, “Love has no age, no limit; and no death.”
FAITH ACTION: In everything that you think, do, and say today, opt for love.