Reflection: Saints and Sacraments
One of the many gifts our Lord Jesus has given to his Church are the Sacraments and Saints. The Sacraments bring us closer to God and they allow us to experience God’s love and unites us with him. The Saints remind us and help us to live a holy and meaningful life. It is through the Saints and their lives that we’re comforted in knowing that even though we might be going through difficult times we are never alone.
Blessed are the poor, the hungry, and the ones who are weeping. There is nothing inherently virtuous or holy about poverty, hunger, or grief. God knows the world doesn’t need more pain or misery. And there is nothing inherently sinful or wrong about being rich, full, or laughing. Jesus is not talking about what or how much we have or don’t have. It’s not about a bottomline calculation of our bank balance. When we are poor, hungry, weeping, whether materially, emotionally, or spiritually, we are more open and receptive.
Looking for something new, a different way of being in the world. We become open to the future, to one another, to the possibility of what seems impossible. And where there is a future there is life, and more life. Jesus is always calling forth abundance from what looks like scarcity. He turns water into wine. He feeds five thousand with five loaves and two fish. The antidote to our scarcity and loneliness is not more. It’s abundance. Abundance is the medicine that heals our soul of its scarcity.
The saints know that neither scarcity nor abundance are about quantity. They are conditions of the soul. If the saints of this life and the next life have anything to teach us, it’s about the abundance of God and the abundant life God offers. It’s St. Mary proclaiming that God “has filled the hungry with good things.” It’s St. Simeon declaring that his eyes have seen God’s salvation and he is free to depart in peace. Some of those people are name brand saints, the ones who have a place on the calendar. Philip, Mary, Luke, Augustine, Theresa, Francis, and Clare. Others are local and particular to us, known only to us. They are not on the church’s calendar and their only place is in our heart. We remember and give thanks for those people whose how of life gave existence to God’s kingdom and life in this world in their time and place. They are witnesses that we too can give existence to the kingdom, to God’s how of being, in our life, time, place, and circumstances.
By Deacon Ricardo Mora