Friday, May 22, 2020

Friday of the Sixth Week of Easter

Being creative always involves a process of struggle, reflection, attempts, sometimes failures, effort, patience, and finally, a sense of joy and peace when creativity gives birth to something or someone new. I think of parents giving birth or awaiting a child in adoption. The process involves struggle and anticipation, pleasure and labor leading to a child. The joy follows and makes all the suffering and pain a distant memory.

But then comes raising this beautiful new human life, and the parenting process is the most demanding of all creative processes. The good parent sacrifices everything for the growth and well being of this child, both its physical growth and emotional growth, but grounded in faith. I can’t even begin to think of anything more challenging and beautiful than the creativity involved in raising a child. It’s the greatest vocation in the world, involving sacrifices we priests can never know or understand. We can only marvel, respect and honor.

Jesus teaches so poignantly about a mother giving birth to a child, a painful process, sometimes unbelievably painful, that leads to the joy of the birth/adoption process, a child, which, in turn, leads to forgetting the pain. While the humanity of Jesus could never know this painful process, his divine nature embraced this experience in a way known only to God. The Passion of Jesus was the ultimate “labor” of creative love.

God... the most creative Being the world will ever know, since he created us, and this creativity was forged in the furnace of love. The whole process was/is both painful and joyful, like giving birth to a child. When God created the pinnacle of all creation, humanity, we were given the power to be creative with our humanity, giving birth to new and deeper expressions of this humanity: an evolution of love. But something went horribly wrong in this evolutionary process: we wanted to become God and control the creative process.

But God, being Love, responded through a plan of redemption and salvation. God, the artist and architect, actually entered this fallen humanity through Jesus, uniting humanity with divinity. Jesus and his gospel began the process of birthing a new earth and a new heaven, leading to the most painful “labor” we can imagine: the paschal mystery of suffering, Cross, death and.... RESURRECTION. This word demands to be in bold, since it has the final word in everything, on the new world and the new humanity slowly, painfully emerging.

The converging powers of love and mercy are bringing together cultures and religions in dialogue. Even this virus, this horrible aberration, is being defeated and we human beings, for once, are putting aside what divides, creating a synergy on what unifies. Somehow, God is at the heart of all of this, breathing the spirit of creativity in the realization that we are all connected in this God of triune love, with Christ being the cornerstone.

Fr. Frank