Do Not Grieve the Holy Spirit of God
This weekend’s readings ask us to search our hearts to discover what it is that might keep us from being the bread of life for others. What is it that disrupts the intense unity that Jesus desires for us? After all, the Eucharist, the bread of life—of everlasting life—is the gift of community and unity that we celebrate at each Mass.
Sometimes we need reminders of how we fall short in achieving that unity in ourselves, families, workplaces, communities, country, and the world. In the reading from Ephesians, the author spells out the activities that would “grieve” the Holy Spirit. Those behaviors or attitudes are bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, reviling, and malice.
We all learned the gifts or the fruits of the Holy Spirit when we received the Sacrament of Confirmation. We have a choice to collaborate with or to grieve the Spirit alive in the community. This weekend provides a time for us to do some self-examination, name the attitude or behavior to change, admit it, and finally to determine to get rid of it in our lives. We don’t want to frustrate the Spirit’s living influence in our lives. We don’t want to grieve the Spirit!
Wednesday is the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a holy day of obligation. Remember those? Here is a prayer from Jean Grant that addresses some of Mary’s wishes and dreams for us:
O Mary, you have told us in your many apparitions to pray for peace, through the use of the rosary. Calm the anger within many nations and world leaders. Guide us in extending the olive branch for peace to others. We come to you, today, with a sincere heart, and know that you, Mary, will not abandon us. Even when Jesus was not yet ready to begin his ministry at the wedding feast at Cana, you had faith and told the waiters to do as Jesus wished. Mary, help us to pray often. Bring back respect for others in our daily life. Guard the words that come from our mouths, and do not let us stand by when others are abused. So many people in the history of the world have put themselves above God and treated our world neighbors with disrespect. Protect the innocent children and faith-filled adults who continue to love your Son unconditionally. Amen.