Light for our Journey

01-02-2022From the Pastor's DeskMsgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

We Three Kings of Orient are,
Bearing gifts we traverse afar,
Field and fountain,
Moor and mountain,
Following yonder Star.

Star of Wonder, Star of Night,
Star with Royal Beauty bright,
Westward leading,
Still proceeding,
Guide us to Thy perfect Light.

Today we celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany. The above words from the hymn “We Three Kings” speak of their journey in a wondrous way. We have no idea how long their journey actually was. But from the Scriptures we see that they traveled a distance following a star that led them to the Christ child.

Today we travel small and great distances in minutes or hours that would not have been possible for the three kings. We don’t travel over moors and mountains on animals, but travel in the convenience and comfort of cars or airplanes. But our ultimate quest is to find what the three kings sought - the presence of Jesus Christ. Unless and until we find Jesus, accept His invitation to be part of His life, and invite Him into the inner recesses of our minds and hearts we will always be searching for what only faith in Jesus will give us. St. Pope John Paul II said, “A person becomes a believer through free choice; it is impossible to make someone believe.”

We don’t have to navigate paths and trails, but distractions and dangers that the three kings could never imagine. After eighteen months we are a journey to find healing from the coronavirus and its effects on our interaction and presence with one another. The words of St. Paul from Colossians 3:12-21 are the true light we need to walk on our journey to healing and escape from this disease. In an age of instant answers and constant information it is not easy to be patient, understanding, and humble. The three kings followed the light of a star. Our life’s journey at this point so easily leads to the darkness of anger, impatience, selfrighteousness, and closed minds. There are countless opinions for wearing masks and not wearing masks. We don’t have the answers to stopping this disease. If we did we would not be where we are at the present moment. But we do have the guide to sincerely and charitably journey through it together.

I offer the words of St. Paul to the Colossians (3:12- 17) that are the true light on the journey to healing not only from this disease but from the anger, division, and rudeness it is causing.

Brothers and sisters:
Put on, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved,
heartfelt compassion, kindness,
humility, gentleness, and patience,
bearing with one another and forgiving one another,
if one has a grievance against another;
as the Lord has forgiven you, so must you also do.
And over all these put on love,
that is, the bond of perfection.
And let the peace of Christ control your hearts,
the peace into which you were also called in one body.
And be thankful.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly,
as in all wisdom you teach and admonish one another,
singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs
with gratitude in your hearts to God.
And whatever you do, in word or in deed,
do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks to God the Father through him.