"Blessed are they who walk in the law of the Lord," who seek him with all their heart (See Ps. 119: 1-2). The heart of the matter in Graham Greene's 1948 classic novel, The Heart of the Matter, is that the protagonist, Scobie, is not in tune with his heart, hence his tragic moral disintegration. Green exploits the moral conflict in the heart of the tragic hero of his Catholic novel. (Now, some of you would be curious enough to check out the book from the library to read. That is the goal. Lol)" In this light, we, too, must check what is going on in our hearts. We must get our hearts in line with the spirit of Christ.
Jesus said to his disciples: 'Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill" (Mt. 5:17). Jesus, as he rightly says, did not come to do away with the Hebrew Bible, the law and the prophets; instead, he came to point us to its spirit, its depth, its heart. Jesus wants to reform our hearts.
Jesus' Great Expectation (an allusion to Charles Dicken's novel) of his followers is to go deeper than the Scribes and Pharisees. Our righteousness, goodness, and holiness must exceed theirs. We are to embrace the heart, the spirit, and the conscience of the matter at hand, the divine law. Jesus' new law leads us to the true intent of the law of God- love, grace, mercy, and freedom. The old law says you shall not kill, Jesus says you shall not give room to anger, the old law says you shall not commit adultery, but Jesus says you shall not lust after another person in your heart. The old law says you shall not swear falsely, but Jesus tells us not to swear. So let your "Yes" means "Yes" and your "No" means "No." Think about these things. Check the heart.
Holy families are the heart of a holy church and community. So Holy Family Fest was held last Sunday in our church to help build and sustain our families in holiness. The Holy Family Fest "was awesome!" That is a quote from Georgann Azzalina. She adds, "Michelle did an EXCELLENT job. Woohoo!!" I share Georgann's excitement, and we appreciate Michelle Schmitt's passion and sacrifices to bring this family-building spiritual project into reality. Our Catholic families are essential for the continuity of the church. I am thankful to all the families that participated and look forward to more families getting involved the next time we hold Holy Family Fest. Please support our young families.
Enjoy the Super Bowl LVII with family and friends. I expect the winning team's supporters and friends to express thanks in Church next Sunday through attendance and contributions. Lol!
Have a Happy St. Valentine's Day! Love you all!!
In the Heart of Christ
Fr. Bernard, OP