Monthly Archives: May 2018

Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity – Cycle B

26 May 2018

The Solemnity of the Holy Trinity, and once again time to reflect on the Power of Three. I learned recently that the triangle is the most powerful geometric shape in the world. Any added force is evenly spread through all three sides. Bridges and buildings that must carry a lot of weight have structural elements built on triangles.

Doesn’t that remind you of the Trinity? The love of the Father, the grace and peace of the Son, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit are all strong in equal measure. Imagine living with only two of those, and not the third. We need every “side” of the Trinity to strengthen us every day.

Fiction writers know that the strongest stories involve three main characters to give an uneven, off-kilter tension. Gone with the Wind needs Scarlet, Rhett, and Ashley Wilkes to give it its Greek tragedy contour. What would Harry Potter be without Harry, Hermione, and Ron traveling together through Hogwarts?

And then there are music groups. Let’s see. There’s the Andrews Sisters, the Hansons, the Kingston Trio and the Supremes. I’ll bet you can think of many more. (I think we talked about the Three Tenors last year.)

The Olympics give medals in gold, silver and bronze. When we think of the future we say we are optimistic, pessimistic, or average. Our pain levels are high, medium, or low. The three primary colors are red, yellow and blue. The most basic harmony in music involves the third note in the scale.

The concept of the Holy Trinity speaks to us because it’s in our DNA (another three) here on planet earth, which is, of course, the third rock from the sun.

With what Person of the Trinity do you most identify?

Kathy McGovern ©2018

Kathy McGovern © 2014-2015

Pentecost Sunday – Cycle B

22 May 2018

Reflecting on Acts 2: 1-11

Come, Holy Spirit.

Like a mighty wind, hover over North Korea and the U.S.

Like tongues of fire, rain down

Wisdom, and Right Counsel,

Understanding, and Fortitude,

Piety, and, oh yes, Fear of the Lord.

 

Come, Holy Spirit.

As you did at creation,

Move upon the waters.

Still volcanoes and earthquakes,

Hurricanes and tornadoes,

Violent rains

And deadly droughts.

 

Come, Holy Spirit.

Heal the wounded in mind and in body.

Change our hearts.

Change our laws.

Change our lives.

Renew us, Spirit, into your servants.

Then uphold us as we renew the face of the earth.

How are you working to serve the Holy Spirit?

Kathy McGovern ©2018

 

Kathy McGovern © 2014-2015

The Ascension of the Lord – Cycle B

12 May 2018

Reflecting on Acts 1: 1-11

Okay, Church. It’s time for our annual Pentecost novena. You may have already started yours last Thursday (on the official Ascension, which most of us now celebrate on the Sunday before Pentecost). Either way, now is the time for all of us to engage in a full-court press to pray for the needs of our families, our cities, our country and our world. Let’s start by praying for all of our mothers, living and dead.

Speaking of mothers, recall that Mary and the disciples kept the first Pentecost novena. They stayed in Jerusalem for the eight days between the Ascension and the day of Pentecost, praying for the descent of the Spirit. After that event, the strength to persevere in prayer was given to all of us. Each year provides more and more opportunities for us to partner with the Holy Spirit in renewing the face of the earth.

What are you storming heaven for during this novena? I had a pretty good list made up, all around our domestic problems of gun violence, advocacy for those with mental illness, and cures for all the diseases which break our hearts. I’ve recently become aware of a family of young girls who are fighting Batten Disease. Google that and count your blessings.  I was moving on to list the other diseases for which I’m praying for cures when I thought to google “world’s worst diseases.”  That’s a grim google search, but I recommend it on the off chance that your list is too short.

There are human rights abuses around the world that cry out for justice and relief. This is just a starter list. Grab a prayer partner and pound on heaven’s door. Pray for God’s kingdom, and for the grace to work toward making that kingdom come.

What will be the top three prayers in your Pentecost novena?

Kathy McGovern ©2018

Kathy McGovern © 2014-2015

Sixth Sunday of Easter – Cycle B

7 May 2018

Reflecting on I John 4: 7-10

Do you sometimes have to dig deep in order to love some of the “unlovables” in your life? It’s probably more the case that, at certain times, on certain days, any of us is pretty unlovable. That letter of John today gives us all the energy we need, though, to have graciousness and patience in situations that can be trying. It’s so easy.

Just reflect for the tiniest moment on all the ways God has loved you. When you are tempted to say something unkind, just think of the thousands of times when people were kinder to you than you deserved. When you want to avoid eye contact with that compulsively needy talker, remember the endless patience of those who loved you through your annoying adolescence.

Sometimes the very quickest touch-point for the love of God is to simply look out the window. Oh my gosh! Look what happened on your street overnight. Trees that were barren yesterday are suddenly bursting with green. Apple blossoms are painting the trees pink and white. Spring flowers are starting to pull up out of the earth, and all creation is groaning with the delight of new birth. Oh, yeah. God’s love for us is impossible to miss.

So, as John’s letter says, it’s not that we have loved God, but that God has loved us! St. Ignatius, in his Spiritual Exercises, advises us to pay attention. Look around! Remember! Breathe in the love of God which is all around you, in your sleeping spouse, your healthy kids, your restored health, your meaningful work. Find your particular gratitude, and that will be the strength that flows to help you love others. It’s easy.

What immediately comes to your mind when you remember God’s love for you?

Kathy McGovern ©2018

Kathy McGovern © 2014-2015