Pastor’s letter for October 3, 2016: Condolences, Compassion and Jesus
As I mentioned in my homilies last Sunday, it was good to come home to Edmonds after spending a good part of the week in the TriCities for my father’s funeral and burial.
I am making it a practice to visit the school and it is such a good thing to be with the children. Being with the children helps put everything into perspective. The little ones are so innocent and real. They are very spontaneous and say what is on their minds without filters. It is why Our Lord said that the Kingdom of Heaven is reserved for the childlike. In heaven we will be like children, without the selfishness of course. When I was leaving the pre-K class a little girl came up to me with her arms out to give me a hug.
I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude for all the condolences I received from parishioners. It was really quite overwhelming. It is the beauty of our humanity to be able to understand to a certain extent the feelings and emotions that other people go through in similar situations, like the death of a parent. This is what is called compassion, which is from Latin words meaning to “suffer with”. Compassion is a virtue and is the ability to connect with another’s sorrow or suffering.
Though God did not need to become man in order to save us, the fact that he did in the person of Jesus Christ, a human being, underlines the fact that God does understand and has compassion for us. Jesus experienced the full spectrum of our human emotions and feelings and has the ability to relate to us as a brother. It is Jesus as our brother and God who pulls us into the love and communion of the Trinity, the love that flows between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. It is our communion with and through Christ in the Trinity that represents our highest dignity, greatest happiness, perfect good, and eternal glory.