L’esprit de la 11 janvier and the Spirit of Jesus

Mass Unity Rally Held In Paris

The Lord Jesus went to the synagogue.

Why? Why bother with such things? “Organized religion.” Why not just pray to my God in my own totally personal way?

Lord Jesus lived the divine law in every respect. And, as St. John puts it, “whoever loves God must love his brother.”

Maybe some of us remember how, a year ago, France suffered a terrorist attack. It wasn’t as big as the one this past November, but it was pretty awful. A few days later, millions of people came together in Paris. They experienced a deep sense of unity and common purpose. They called that sense l’esprit de la 11 janvier, “the spirit of January 11.” In the face of cruel violence and destruction, they found hope by coming together.

My point is: If we really want hope, we have to come together. If we really want to know who we are, we have to come together. If we really want to make contact with the kind of solid foundation that can give us a firm footing, even when evil tries to stare us down–we need to come together. Because that firm footing comes only from solidarity with others.

Now, rallies can be great. But the truth is that God Himself has given us the perfect way of coming together. The Holy Mass.

We come together not just one time, or even just once a year, but every week, every day. We come together to share the spirit. And it’s not just l’esprit de 11 janvier, as good as that spirit may be. No: we share an infinitely greater spirit. The Holy Spirit of Jesus Christ.

He is the One Who truly unites, Who truly overcomes all the sin and evil of this world. The true source of hope for our human race.

We can’t make it alone. We need Him, and we need each other.

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