Lent is right around the corner! Indeed, Ash Wednesday is February 14-wink, wink: St. Valentine's Day (perhaps a playful reminder that the Lenten journey is meant to grow us in in love). As I look ahead to Lent, I cannot but think that a fitting theme for our Lenten journey ought to center on mercy, on mercy received and mercy given. Mercy is overflowing love in the midst of human brokenness. Each of us has been given great mercy (I know that I have!). If we are to be truly the children of God that we are by such mercy, then we must show mercy to one another, we must love another generously and tenderly where we are frail.
Saint Clare (+1253), who met St. Francis, at the age of eighteen, when he came to preach a Lenten mission in her parish, reminds us of our calling to mercy, to compassionate love.
We become what we love and whom we love shapes what we become. If we love things, we become a thing. If we love nothing, we become nothing. Imitation is not a literal mimicking of Christ, rather it means becoming the image of the beloved, an image disclosed through transformation. This means we are to become vessels of God's compassionate love for others.
Yours in our Lord,
pastor and brother
From the desk of the Rector