“The real ‘wedding gift’ is this: Your marriage is a reflection of the Holy Trinity, and with the grace of Christ, you are a living and credible icon of God and His love.”

~Pope Francis, Wednesday Address, April 2, 2014

 

This morning I opened up my email to find an email from a great friend of our Diocese, Chris Stewart of Casting Nets Ministries.  Chris and Tony have visited our Diocese from Wichita many times in the past few years.  They were our speakers for the 2017 Summit (those talks are here), led the 2018 Ambassadors Training and have done missions in at least four parishes in our Diocese.  Here is an excerpt from his email today:

“We are living in one of the few times in Church history when the laity have been denied access to the sacraments. While some dioceses are beginning to offer public Masses with restrictions (my Diocese of Wichita opened about 3 weeks ago…Praise the Lord), others are still on lock-down. . . .However, there is a Sacrament that many of us partake in everyday…every hour…actually every moment…Marriage! (Obviously not everyone is married but I will address this in just a second).

Marriage itself is a Sacrament…you are a Sacrament. Remember the definition of Sacrament: an outward sign instituted by Christ to give grace. That is you.

You are a Sacrament to your spouse…an outward sign to them to give grace. You are a Sacrament to your children and grandchildren; to your parents, siblings, cousins. You are a Sacrament to your fellow parishioners, to your neighbors, and co-workers. You are a Sacrament to the cashier, bank clerk and stranger.

What if you are not married…well…you can be a recipient of that grace from married couples. Encourage couples to be that to the world. In fact, married couples need to be reminded of this and encourage one another in their role of building the Kingdom of God.

The Catechism says Matrimony is “directed toward the salvation of others; if they contribute as well to personal salvation, it is through service to others that they do so. They confer a particular mission in the Church and serve to build up the People of God” (CCC 1534).

To do this we need help, we need each other.”

What an appropriate reflection for this Sunday because the Feast we celebrate on Sunday is Trinity Sunday.  The Catechism of the Catholic Church says in paragraph 234, “The mystery of the Most Holy Trinity is the central mystery of Christian faith and life. It is the mystery of God in himself. It is therefore the source of all the other mysteries of faith, the light that enlightens them. It is the most fundamental and essential teaching in the “hierarchy of the truths of faith”.”  Notice it says that the Truth we celebrate on Sunday is the central, most fundamental teaching of Christianity.  It is the source of all other teachings, the foundation of all.

It is also one of the most difficult mysteries to wrap our minds around.  And for many of us, I don’t think this “central” teaching makes much difference in what we think and how we act.  It is a difficult idea to bring into our daily experience.  God knows this.  He knows that the Truth of who He is is much too big for our minds and hearts to fathom.  And so he has given us a very real and tangible “icon” of this mystery in marriage.

I would echo Chris and say that we cannot begin to experience and live out the greatness of our mission and privilege to be credible signs of God’s love without help, without each other if we are married.  And if we are not, we cannot receive the graces marriage brings to us or understand the meaning of this “icon” either without assistance.

Because we can’t begin to appreciate the gift God designed marriage to be for the world, whether you are married or single, I would encourage you to celebrate this great feast in the Church by joining some of the best teachers and witnesses of the faith for a FREE Summit on Marriage beginning this coming Thursday, June 11.  Chris says:

“You will hear amazing testimonies of couples’ victories and struggles, but more importantly you will be connected with couples from all over the world who share in the same desire as you . . . HEAVEN.”  For more information and to register, see the link below.

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