Friday, January 22, 2016
Week of Prayer for Christian Unity Day 5 Reflection
Day 5 (January 22), The Fellowship of the Apostles
John 13:34-35, I give you a new commandment, that you love one another.
Meditation—A loving community with a variety of backgrounds and dispositions
The community the Apostles and our own communities are rooted in love. We enrich our communal life by contributing the many good gifts God has given us. We also bring our idiosyncrasies and weaknesses to our common life. The Christian community is a community of humans. We learn to love one another with all our strengths and our weaknesses. This takes some practice and some prayer!
Today we celebrate the March for Life here in Washington. Becoming part of the Pro-life movement is learning to love each and every person. This includes the child in the womb, his or her mother and father, and our opponents. Jesus’ command of love for neighbor includes everyone.
In our ecumenical relationships with our Protestant and Orthodox brothers and sisters we care for one another despite our disagreements. In fact God can work through them for us. Years ago, two friends who are Episcopalians took me to lunch. They suggested that I apply for an ecumenical position. After some discernment [more on this tomorrow] I did apply and was chosen. Thus many years later I am writing these short reflections. God sometimes works in unexpected, surprising and even humorous ways.
God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may you give to all Christians, and especially to those entrusted with leadership in your Church, the spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that with the eyes of our hearts we may see the hope to which you have called us: one body and one Spirit, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above and through all and in all. Amen.
Father John Crossin, OSFS is executive director of the Secretariat for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. He is a consultor to the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. He tweets @crossinusccb.