Last time the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart fell on June 28?
I’m not quite that old. So this is my first ever Sacred-Heart birthday 🙂
If I live as long as my paternal grandmother, I will have three more, in 2030, 2041, and 2052. To have a fifth Sacred-Heart birthday, I would have to live to be 139. All of us will be long-dead then!
Anyway, here’s a homily for today’s Solemnity:
“God is love.” Scripture affirms it. God is love.
But we have no way of knowing what the words mean. “God” is, by definition, a word we cannot define. Except in the negative. Limitless, infinite, unimaginable.
And “love” seems to mean whatever the speaker wants it to mean. “I love World-Cup soccer.” “I love fried chicken.” “I love birthday presents.”
Actually, I don’t really. The person who deserves praise and congratulations regarding today’s 49th anniversary of birth isn’t the passive participant in the original event, but the excruciatingly active participant.
Anyway, God is love, yes. But we don’t know what it means. And the only One Who can translate it into language which we can truly understand is: God.
He did so. By becoming man.
Jesus lived the human life of infinite divine love. He translated omnipotent divine love into perfect human love. He gently healed, fed, forgave, and enlightened the ones He loved. Then He gave Himself over to death, for the human race that He loves.
In the human love of Jesus, we see with our limited human eyes the meaning of the unfathomable divine words: God is love.
So we dedicate our lives to studying this revelation. To studying Jesus, loving Him, and following Him. The four gospels, along with all the other biblical books, and the living ceremonies of the Church—together they give us Jesus. To study, love, and imitate, to learn what “God is love” really means.
And the Scriptures and sacraments give us Jesus our God to worship and pray to. By worshiping Jesus Christ and praying to Him, we encounter the human brother Who loves us with the divine love of the infinite God Who loves us.
In return for our worship, He opens His Heart and gives us Himself. Making us part of the meaning of the words: God is love.