“I give you a new commandment:  love one another.  As I have loved you, so you also should love one another.”  Our Gospel message is so straight forward and to the point!  Love one another!  No equivocation!  No conditions!  No qualifiers!  Just love one another!  At the end of the day this is the greatest need any of us has – to be loved!  God made us for love.  To love Him, to know Him, and to serve Him!  We come to know Him through one another, for we are made in His image and He resides in each of us.  We serve Him by serving one another, as He calls us to do in and through the gospels.  We need to set aside our pride, our anger, our selfishness, our judgements and our fears.  In their place we foster humility, patience, kindness, gentleness, forgiveness and compassion; for these are the places where we find God and His love for us. 

As Vincentians, this is the very essence of who and what we are.  We come to those who we find hurting and in need.  First and foremost we are called to bring them the love of Christ, making His hope for them evident through the spirit we come in.  We look for the presence of God in each person, recognizing that we too have many ‘poverties’ to overcome.  Together, we life one another up glorifying God by our love for each other.  Do I truly walk in humility, setting aside pride and judgement, that I may bring the hope and love of Christ to those whom I encounter?

Lord Jesus Christ, let me love as you have loved!  Let me walk humbly, seeking your face in all I encounter.  Let me embrace those who are in so much pain, so much need, so much uncertainty with the loving embrace of your presence, hope and mercy that they may be lifted into your light!  If it be your will, allow me to be your vessel of love to another in need this day.   We pray all of this in your name.  Amen

Deacon Mike