We too believe and therefore speak, knowing that the one who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus. // 2 Corinthians 4:13-14
Being a Catholic in our culture today can be painfully discouraging, which is why when I enter through the doors of our church and the priest is wearing red vestments, it is a great consolation to my soul. In the throes of a very sick culture, I sit in my pew and look long and hard at those red vestments signifying that today’s Mass commemorates a saint who was a martyr, and I let that physical representation of the blood of the martyrs teach me about what it means to give it all over for Christ.
Today we celebrate the incomprehensible zeal of Saint James, the brother of John and often called “the greater,” but most of all the martyr who had courage and love for Jesus rooted so deeply within his heart that he was willing to be beheaded for the Kingdom. In the First Reading today, Saint Paul outlines the hardship that the faithful in Corinth faced in spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. He writes about how they were afflicted (in every way), perplexed, persecuted, and struck down.
These hardships sound akin to the reality many of us face in our families, workplaces, schools, and friend groups as we stand for the truth of the one, holy, Catholic, and apostolic Church in the year 2022. To stand for Christ, for the Church, and for life in a culture that is hostile, at best, to the name of Jesus can be very challenging. And yet, our beloved martyrs teach us how to stand anyway because they knew the consolation that comes in this: “The one who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus.”
That is what the martyrs lived for.
That is what we are living for: the Resurrection.
May we look at the red vestments and never forget it.
Saint James, beautiful, holy martyr, pray for us who need the zeal and courage to carry on.We are living for the Resurrection. // @emwilss Click To Tweet