Feast of Mary of the Cross MacKillop, 8 August
Mary’s life is an example of how our relationship with Jesus should be. The Gospel story highlights the trust Christians should have in Jesus and how, because we know that God is looking after us, we should set our whole heart on God’s kingdom.
Because Mary had this beautiful relationship with Jesus, in everything she did, she put God 1st. Is this how you live your life?
The Church teaches us that the “Sunday Eucharist is the foundation and confirmation of all Christian practice” (CCC 2181). This is because Jesus commanded his Apostles to celebrate this – the mystery of our redemption – so we could continue to share in its fruits and similarly offer ourselves to each other.
For example, we couldn’t ‘see the need of another and respond to it’ (cf. Mary MacKillop) with God’s love in our hearts without going to Mass on Sundays: to be a part of the parish community, to celebrate, to worship. At Mass the Spirit fills us in a particular way when we commune with Jesus and the Spirit conforms us to Christ so we can respond to the rest of the gathered Church as if we were loving ourselves. That is what happens when the community, or Body of Christ, gathers on Sunday (or the vigil) to worship God.
Mary understood this keenly and like every other Saint, made the Eucharist the foundation of her life. She adored God’s will, writing in a letter that God’s will is “beautiful.” Wouldn’t you want to experience this beauty in your life? Mary MacKillop wants you to know that God is calling you each to come to the Sunday Eucharist because this is the foundation of your life. It’s the beginning of a beautiful life you will not otherwise know.
This calling is not only her call to you, but it is a call of the Spirit. This Sunday we will hear that we must be ready for the Son of Man who is coming at an unexpected hour. The interior losing of faith in the living Gospels and the reality of our Lord Jesus Christ in our lives is the sign of Jesus’ coming.
St Paul, talking about the coming of the Lord, says that Jesus will not return until the time the great apostasy or rebellion (2 Thessalonians). The faith will have spread throughout the world and then, with the falling away from the faith, humanity will know what they are rejecting. This is a sign of the second coming. This is what occurring now.
Now is the time of God’s favour; now is the time to respond to the call of Jesus which has gone out to all people. However, only the elect respond. Are you disposed to this calling? Can you say with Mary MacKillop: “the love of my sweet Jesus is too strong, too beautiful, and His merits too great, for me not to cling to Him?” Come back to Him, come back to safety; come back to the sacraments of not only Sunday Eucharist, but also regular confession.