by John Dalla Costa
Life-long Catholics who volunteer for the R.C.I.A. program at St. Basil’s usually feel that they receive so much more than they give. As catechumens and candidates make their journey towards Christ, we who accompany them inevitably see our faith with fresh eyes. Once the Easter Vigil draws near, the excitement becomes infectious, as the awe and glee of those about to receive the sacraments sweep us all into extraordinary wonder of the Passion and Resurrection of Jesus.
Today’s readings invite us to relish with quickened and grateful hearts the extraordinary banquet God so lovingly makes available to us each day. We often think that disbelief is the opposite of faith. But as we hear Jesus explain in the Gospel, the emptiness that most threatens our communion with God is taking God’s ever-overflowing generosity for granted.
Pope Francis has repeatedly called our attention to the “sin of indifference.” This complacency not only sanitizes God’s gifts and circumscribes God’s presence. It also deprives us of the deep joy from cherishing God’s mercy and love.
There is no easy answer to the distinction Jesus makes that: “Many are called, but few are chosen.” From the scriptures and lives of the saints we can surmise that, while many are called to listen to God’s Word, few become the chosen by heeding with full-hearts what is heard.
Many are called to partake of the body of Christ, yet few are chosen by then embodying Christ to the hungry, angry, wounded and wounding world. Many are called to experience God’s healing mercy, however few are chosen by making full use of their talents and gifts to spread forgiveness and peace.
Each of us have our own calling, and so each of us need to discern how we are to be chosen – through prayer, and in the needs of our families, friends, community, and church. This attentiveness to how we are special in our souls and capabilities is the cloak that earns us welcome in God’s feast, because it honours the One who invited us by not taking that-of-God within us for granted.
- Isaiah 25.6-10
- Psalm 23
- Philippians 4.12-14, 19-20
- Matthew 22.1-14