The Way of the Disciple... by Mollie Muntefering, Coordinator of Liturgy
A few weeks ago, I began to explore how the liturgical seasons of Advent, Christmas, Lent and Easter could be likened to the journey a couple takes as they approach marriage, and how this parallels our faith journey with Christ. Whether we are talking about our covenantal relationship with Christ or with each other, each season challenges us to examine our hearts, work toward holiness and faithfulness, and to celebrate God’s love and presence in our lives.
· What is a covenantal relationship?
Through Christ’s Passion, death, and resurrection, we are united to Him forever. His sacrifice on the cross displayed the depth of His love and complete commitment to us; and established the new, eternal covenant between God and humanity. Similarly, during a wedding celebration, a husband and wife establish a covenant between themselves. Offering their whole selves to each other, and vowing their fidelity. They are solemnly bonded to each other until death. Though humans sometimes fail each other, in our relationship with Jesus, we can live in the hope and security that despite our weaknesses and failures he continues to love us. Nothing can separate us from him.
· How does this covenant change us and how we live?
During Ordinary Time, the six months between the Easter season and Advent, we learn how to “live out” our covenant. In other words: the honeymoon is over and married life begins! Throughout Ordinary Time, we hear a variety of readings that bring us to a fuller understanding of Jesus and help us grow in faith, just as every day we learn a little more about our spouse (for better or worse!). As we come to know about Jesus through scripture, experience him physically in the Eucharist, and remain close to him through prayer, we better understand how much he loves us and what path he intends for us. In a similar way, we get a more complete picture of our spouse through sharing stories, being physically close, and talking each day. Thus the love for each other grows and you learn how to walk your path together. With each story and encounter, we come to know that we are not walking with a stranger, we are with our friend who cares for us.