A priest was questioning a little boy. “Who does the Sun belong to?” “God,” the little boy said.
“And the moon?” “God.”
“And the stars?” “God.”
“And this Teddy Bear? Who does it belong to?” “Teddy? He’s mine!”
It never gets any easier.
As anyone who ever interacted with a toddler knows, the idea of “sharing” can be a hard one to get across. (Not that I have much experience with toddlers, but I asked Sally, our parish secretary, about it!) In this Sunday’s second reading St. Paul encourages the Corinthians to be open not just to the idea but the reality of sharing, so that ‘the who had much would not have too much, and the one who had little would not have too little.’ This reading comes into sharp focus for me, because this weekend is the last I will be celebrating at Assumption Parish, and it is also the first weekend our new deacon, Steven Huber, is here. Now something that was Assumption’s will be shared henceforth with Edmonton, and something that was Houston’s (Steven) will be shared with Windsor. And from my point of view, something that was mine is now something I am being asked to give over to someone else.
It is an essential part of our faith that a blessing that is shared multiplies. Think of the miracle of the loaves and fishes, where a boy’s lunch, freely shared, becomes enough for five thousand people with lots left over. Perhaps the reason for this is because that in sharing we communicate God’s love, which is inexhaustible. This is one of the themes of today’s Gospel. Christ’s grace is so abundant that not only is a little girl raised from the dead, but a woman with chronic illness is healed solely by touching the hem of Jesus’ cloak. When we are asked to give up our lunch – or something bigger – may we always remember that this is the way that God’s grace works to multiply the good things of this world.
May God bless you all.
—Fr. Jim Stenberg C.S.B.