On this third Sunday of July, we Redemptoristines, along with our Redemptorist priests, brothers and associates around the world, celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Redeemer. The official name of the Redemptoristines is actually the Order of the Most Holy Redeemer.
This feast celebrates the mystery of our salvation: God the Father gives the Son, born of the Virgin Mary, to become the living image of God’s own Love and by the Love of the Son who, in giving Himself for us, restores us to our original dignity. This abundant outpouring of love is revealed today in our Redemptorist family by our witnessing, through prayer and mission, to Christ’s life of love for the salvation of the world.
Twice this past weekend, I had the opportunity to witness reflections of God’s Love. The first was my nephew’s wedding to his beautiful bride. They looked at each other with such love as they were united together in a life of love: ‘…to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, all the days of my life.’
The second was when I visited my friend in the nursing home. At one point her husband passed by the window where we were sitting and she looked with such love at the door then: expectant, waiting. He appeared at the threshold with the same look of love. A redemptive love that said, ‘I am here for you, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish you all the days of my life.’
By loving as God does, Jesus, the visible image of God, restores us to our original dignity. These two couples reveal to each other, and us, the Life of Love that restores us, unites us, redeems us.