Who, Me? A Saint?
The laity has a lot to offer.
Holiness is not only for canonized saints. Our Baptism invites us all to be saints. It could even be said that our Baptism demands it.
The call to holiness is a universal invitation. The U.S. bishops, in their pastoral letter Called and Gifted for the Third Millennium, remind us that lay men and women are called to holiness and that their contribution to the church of Christ has been, and continues to be, essential.
Jesus invites us, his disciples, to put into practice our faith and, in doing so, to live in God. One place where the laity can encounter the divine is in the family. This happens when we share our joys, sorrows, challenges, and successes of our family life; when we care for and love our family members; and when we share our faith and our doubts.
This union also takes place within our parish “family.” When we participate in prayer groups, in Bible study, in the youth group, in different ministries, and of course in the sacraments, we meet Jesus.
Our daily responsibilities at work can give, in part, meaning and direction to our lives and lead us beyond ourselves toward service to others. We encounter the Lord in and through our work.
Another place were we can meet God is God’s creation. Recognizing the hand of God in nature not only leads us to praise and thank the Lord but also to commit ourselves to care for the environment and to use it wisely. In nature we meet God.
The path to holiness to which we are called is really a path of relationships: relationships with our families, with our brothers and sisters in faith, in our workplaces, with the human family, and with nature.
These relationships must be built on faith, justice, and love; they must follow the example of Jesus Christ who gave his life for love and service to others and to God. That is the response we are invited to give to the call to holiness that Christ issues to us.
- In your daily life, where do you meet God most often and to what does God challenge you?