What are we missing?
Yesterday we received a wedding invitation from a nephew of my husband. It was an odd long shape, folded to display different panels, of light green paper and printed on a movable type hand printing press (that had belonged to John’s Dad) with small silk screened orange leaves floating on each panel announcing the fall wedding. The words spoke of a traditional “nuptial mass where they will be united in the sacrament of marriage” and the last panel announced a “big old party followin’ the long Catholic wedding” to be held in the parish center.
I have a feeling this wedding is going to be a prophetic wedding for my children and for us. Each letter was selected very intentionally (odd, playful sizes at times) and carefully placed in the press for the desired effect. Each invitation was hand silk-screened with the design of various leaves hand cut. These are obviously artists that are marrying each other, but they are also intentional people of faith choosing to proclaim faithfulness in the face of so much cause for cynicism in our world and to publicly commit to unconditional love and lives of simplicity and creativity, faith, joy and service.
In this season of weddings and family reunions, the gospel today reminds us to watch and listen to the prophets among those who are familiar. I have the good fortune to work with young adults every day at Creighton. I am so grateful to be part of their lives as they encounter truth, find the treasure (Wednesday’s reading) and decide to ‘sell all’ they have to embrace the kingdom. We can write-off young adults (our own children sometimes) in the way the Nazareans did Jesus in the gospel today. In the words of one translation: “And they found him all together too much for them.” But many are giving us example, heeding the prophetic call to live differently, to change our ways to ways of justice, sustainability and peace.
Before summer is over, let’s let this time when we have to wear less, be a time when we can listen more and let more of the gospel penetrate us. As we reflect on our summer days, let’s be attentive to the ways we resist and become hostile or defensive to both the subtle and the overt prophetic challenges from those we know well.
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