Homily for May 10 - "Mother's Day"

     Xochitl Dixon shared the following story in one of the booklets {Our Daily Bread} I often read. Years ago, my four year old son gave me a framed wooden heart mounted on a metal plate with the word forever painted in its center. As he presented this gift to me, he said, "I love you forever, Mommy." I thanked him with a hug and replied, "I love you more." That priceless gift still assures me of my son's never-ending love. On tough days, God uses that sweet present to comfort and encourage me as He affirms I am deeply loved.

     In today's scripture readings Jesus is telling us "I love you forever." Alleluia! Truly Jesus is the gift of God's never-ending love. In the gospel Jesus teaches the disciples (and us) "In my Father's house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?" Imagine that - Jesus prepares a place for each one of us! We immediately think of heaven as this place prepared for us by Christ Jesus.

     But it is not a room, it is a relationship. This is the idea that Mary Pedersen shared in her article in this Sunday's edition of The Witness. Heaven is not room, but an indwelling, a relationship with Jesus, who is "the way, the truth and the life." I can honestly state that my heart, soul and mind leaps for joy in the thought of a deep and intimate relationship with Jesus in his never-ending love. We can experience this relationship every day in our prayers, in the scriptures, by living out the corporal and spiritual works of mercy, abiding by the Golden Rule, whenever we receive the Lord in the Eucharist, or following the Ten Commandments. Wow!

     We learn that relationships change throughout our life - whether it is a relationship with spouse, children, friends, classmates, or neighbors. However, Jesus is our way to an unending and unchanging relationship of love, joy and peace ... a relationship that leads and guides us into eternal life. Jesus said to the disciples, "I love you forever." He says the exact words to us today.

     HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY. May every mother hear the voice of a child saying "I love you forever, mom." May every mother know that we are praying for them whether they are still with us on earth or in heaven.