THE PILGRIMAGE TO PENTECOST
Lent and Easter, 2016, is now history. What did we learn this season that is different from prior seasons? Have we taken an accounting of what our conscience asked us to leave behind in Lent? It’s a form of Spring Cleaning for the soul. Have we experienced a new, yet unidentified, feeling during Lent and Easter that lingers yet today? Have you felt, as I have, a sense of unease this season, an unrest that is seemingly minus an answer?
I have. At first I attributed it to the long, arduous and extremely painful 15 months in an emotional roller coaster with our adopted daughter and the spiritual, financial and emotional costs to my husband, John and me. Further reflection caused me to consider whether this feeling comes from my current frustration with my parish and the letter I wrote to the Chair of our Pastoral Council and the Pastor; it was blunt and to the point defining my dissatisfaction in spades. I hear later that the pastor delivered his sermon on Holy Thursday standing in the FILLED baptismal font talking about how the last 10 months have been the most difficult of his life! Yikes. So which crisis is God calling me to deal with, I began to think.
- So I step back and try to piece my personal puzzle together. Lent was a time that I was to put aside habits, thoughts and things that keep me stuck in this journey of life. Many had to do with our daughter. Got it. Then, the Easter surprise. Was Jesus’ resurrection merely a historic, though significant moment, a marker moment for Christianity differentiating Jesus from other prophets OR Is there a Resurrection message calling us all to rise out of our current comfort zones to something different?
I think so. Reinforcing that idea…we are surrounded by new life, an odyssey of excitement seeing creation re-born. Seeing the soil moved by a tiny emergence pushing new life through. That which has been dormant is percolating forward to create a new landscape. So, ok, nature is being made anew around us. Is it missing US—you and me? Are we still in dormancy? Are we being called to new birth, identity, and lifestyle? YES!
For me, despite the tears, my runaway daughter’s issues will continue without the needed help. She has been my extended Good Friday period. My pastor needs to figure things out. The Easter message this year has spoken to me boldly. Easter is laser-focused on Jesus and His triumphant emergence from the Paschal Mystery into New Life. Isn’t our call similar?
Just as Easter focuses us on Jesus, Pentecost is a call to adulthood in our faith and is our day! Jesus came to the disciples in the upper room as the Ascended Christ to invite them to carry on His work. Few of us realize that Jesus invited them to do more than He did. Whoa! Doesn’t that just stop your heart? Isn’t that the ultimate challenge? In John 14: 12 we hear the Last Supper discourse where Jesus said, “Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes in me will do the works that I do, and will do greater ones than these, because I am going to the Father.” I felt that statement spoke to me. That Scriptural phrase, if it was ever read, escaped me completely.
We are being called to do the work that remains and that “to do list” is continually growing. I’d like to here from you on how my thoughts hit you.
Getting engaged, “owning” the issues, as Archbishop Cupich said during his Easter homily is the direction we’re heading.
- To examine those issues, join a Listening Circle or join an online version now available. We’ll connect you with others interested in this venture. Connect this way—insert how. I’ve reached out to Helen.
- Come with us to a life-altering experience as we walk the Camino de Santiago in Spain as a pilgrimage experience. Connect with this link: wpilgrimages.com/ccsg.