Posted July 31, 2020
18th Sunday of the Year (Yr A)
In the passage from the Letter to the Romans that we have just heard St Paul is reminding the community of the grounds they have for looking forward with complete assurance to their final salvation. So when he says that nothing but nothing can separate us from ‘the love of Christ’, he must mean not our love for Christ, which is so fickle and inconstant that it can hardly be grounds for assurance. He must mean Christ’s love for us. Christ’s love for us is unconditional. It is irrevocable. It is the expression of God’s everlasting faithfulness. Nothing can ever separate us from it. Christ loves us with such unstoppable intensity that, whatever happens in this world of ours, we can rely on him to bring to completion the work of salvation he has begun in us.
Had St Paul, I wonder, ever experienced anything like COVID-19? Our world is falling apart. People are dying in their thousands around us; more than 260,000 cases of infection so far in England alone. Every day more and more people are losing their loved ones in a horrible death. We are afraid; we are perplexed. It’s going to get worse.
Has Christ stopped loving us?
Try not to be discouraged; don’t lose faith. We are going through something of what Jesus himself went through as he ‘loved us to the end’ (Jn 13: 1). Take hold of his hand in this Eucharist, as he steps out of the horrors of his Passion into the loveliness of Easter.
Fr Tom Deidun