Prayers of the Church

Just back from Sunday liturgy at my local parish here in Seattle.  I must say that I LOVE the people of God coming together to celebrate God's love, pray for the needs of the community and larger world, and remember Jesus, his life, death and resurrection and his call to us today to create a world of justice and peace.  Yes, I guess one might stay I am still a church geek.  (In case you couldn't guess by the fact that I just professed final vows as a Catholic Sister.)

This morning, the mass was said by my pastor in honor of my perpetual profession and for my intentions.  He'd sent a card last week indicating that he would say mass for me.  I received quite a number of mass cards actually from a variety of folks, which is a wonderful gift!  But when I was looking in the bulletin from last Sunday, I saw that the 8:30 am mass this morning was for my intentions.  I normally go to the 10:30 mass, but decided to go to the 8:30 am mass today for obvious reasons. It was pretty wonderful to be there.  It always is really but especially so today.

When I think about why I'm Catholic, which I do sometimes think about given that I spent about 10 years away from the Church in my late teen's and early/mid 20s, the communion of Saints and intercessory prayer often come to mind.  No, I do not think that God is up in heaven, sitting on cloud, waiting for people's prayers before he takes action in our favor (or even against us).  Thankfully I no longer have an image of a puppet master God or even a God of please and thank you.  God is all loving, compassionate and ever present to us.  Rather, I think, we're the ones that take things for granted and sometimes check out of the relationship ... until we need something that is.

When it comes to the communion of Saints and the intercessory prayers of the Church, what I experience is the overwhelming power of interconnection and interdependence.  We are present to one another, not only in our daily lives but in our prayer, in our relationship with God our creator, Jesus our redeemer, and the life giving Holy Spirit.  We share our hopes and dreams, our pains and sorrows, our joys and gifts in our relationships with God, with our selves, and with each other.  There's a tremendous beauty there that I cannot really do justice to with mere words and also a mystery, part of the mystery of God and the Church.  We are in this together.  We will not forget.  We remember.  We celebrate. We believe.

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