July 9th

July 9th

“Come to me…”

     Our memories are precious. When we remember a loved one who has died, our memories are sacred. When I am in the kitchen and making an old world pasta recipe from the Abruzzi region of Italy, I feel my grandmother with me. If I begin singing as I cook, then I know she is still a part of me. Finally, when it is all finished, as I eat, I am brought back to her kitchen table in that little house on the Sheffield Terrace of Aliquippa. I feel all of that, even if I am alone in my kitchen in Ellwood City.
     Our memories are precious. They are sacred. Jesus tells us that when we gather in His name and call on Him, He will be present to us. Therefore, our memories have a transcendent quality about them. Our memories can summon Jesus from heaven. Our memories are sacred. This means that there are aspects of our ability to remember that we have not yet explored.
     Our memories can also hold on to negative and disordered experiences that prevent reconciliation and ultimately diminish our ability to receive God. However, a simple act of will can change that.
In the Gospel today, Jesus urges us to come to Him. He is gentle to us because we are His. Other Scripture passages reveal a tough and angry Jesus as He confronts those who work for the adversary. Nevertheless, we are His and Jesus reveals the Father to us.
     Our church is blessed to have a large statue of Jesus welcoming us with outstretched arms. Each time we enter the church, He says, “Come to Me. The One who comes to us whenever we remember Him, asks us to reciprocate. We must also make time and find ways to “come to Him.” He is gentle because we are His. And He is present to us because we remember, we celebrate and we believe.