So, it appears that everyone in the world is on a 30 day retreat. Welcome to the Lentiest Lent there ever was.
The French priest and philosopher Pierre Teilhard de Chardin once wrote that “we as human beings come to a point in our lives where we have to make a choice, either we genuflect before something higher or we begin to self-destruct.” The author Simone Weil concurs. “The deepest need in the human soul is an obedience to something higher, something beyond ourselves or else we grow silly and pompous.” Both of them are reflecting the strange and wonderful paradox of human existence: we only discover and experience the meaning of life when we are dying to ourselves and in doing so, are giving life away.
Think about this for a second and test it against your own experience. Have you ever met someone in your life who is completely selfish and wrapped up in themselves? How about the people with twelve cases of toilet paper and 16 gallons of milk in their cart? Were they happy? Were they remotely satisfied or at peace? On the other hand, the people who are serene and hospitable, the ones who seem at home with life are those who do not place themselves at the center of the universe, are those who recognize that the secret of life is not to cling, not to horde, not to grasp, but to give.
As I mentioned in my homily last weekend, all of us are learning important lessons about ourselves. We will look back at this time and hopefully grow to become better Catholics, better Christians, better people.