How sad is this!!
I don’t know whether it is an age thing, but when I am bored and at a loose end, I can find myself surfing the web reading the Sunday Newsletters from other parishes.
This week was a bit of a shock, though, when I found a piece in one highlighting the “4 last things”, death, judgment, heaven and hell, and attempting to provide an authentic interpretation of what was perceived as Church teaching.
The first thing that caught my eye was the attempt to explain and understand this without a single reference to God’s love for us. There were plenty of references to sin, being judged, torment, despair and a delightful reference to “purifying suffering” but not one word about the eternal and unconditional love that God has for us.
Last Sunday, in the first reading, we had the imagery of God sitting at the gate gazing on us, waiting patiently “smiling like a magnificent symphony” as Julian of Norwich saw God. Where is the condemnation in the patience of the God who loves us?
Yes, there can be an absence of God in our lives, call that what we like. We have the freedom to choose that option as a gift from God. But who in their right mind would make that choice when touched by the loving hand of the one who created us, sustained through the joys and sorrows of life a God who sits patiently waiting for us.
My last things involve a loving God clasping me in arms of love and kissing me tenderly.
Just a thought!