Saturday, November 1, 2014

Open to the Holy Spirit's Grace

Lucia Janaro and parents, on her Confirmation day.
This is the first time that I can remember a Confirmation taking place on All Saints Day.

But that's what happened in the parish this year. And so Lucia Janaro received the sacrament today along with more than 60 other young people. This sacrament of royal anointing, this outpouring of the abundance of grace and the gifts of the Holy Spirit, means so much more than we can understand.

It certainly is not intended to be a "graduation ceremony," or a Catholic checking-off-the-box that brings faith education (and faith interest) to an end. Too often that is what happens.

We are blessed, however, to be in an environment where the education continues and deepens. There is some awareness among us that the journey of faith is just beginning for an adolescent who is discovering his or her own identity for the first time.

Still, we must be careful not to think things happen automatically just because we presume that we are such "good Catholics" or that we-are-so-much-better-than-everybody-else. We must remember that it is Jesus who gives the Holy Spirit. It is Jesus who gives grace through the sacraments and in the depths of our hearts, and in the hearts of our children.

Every life is an adventure of grace, a calling from God who draws the person along the secret ways of love. Let us pray for the grace to make room for the working of His love.