Livonia, Michigan

From Fr. Tom!

Jesus asks in the gospel for this Sunday :
Who do you say I am?
Jesus asks, and Peter answers! Where does Peter get the idea that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, the Messiah? Well, he gets it from being with Jesus and coming to understand that all the things Jesus does – healing, helping, forgiving, loving, teaching, and living out life in a certain, specific way –come together and define Him. Jesus is the Messiah.
In the world of business today, specifically in the marketing departments, we would say that Jesus has a specific brand image. Think about it, when I say “Jesus” it triggers within each person here a whole series of thoughts that contain within them the essence of how to live out the Christian life.
OK – then what does it mean when, in response to being asked who we are, or what faith we follow, we say:
We are followers of Jesus. We are Christian. We are Catholic.?
If this is an authentic description of your life, what does it mean? What it has to mean is that my life reflects the same things that the life of Jesus did, it means I am kind, loving, forgiving, patient, that I care for the poor, that I fight for the marginalized, and all the things that define being a follower of Jesus, I am.
If no one knew whether or not we belonged to this Church, would we still be seen as a Christian? Would we be seen, as showing the same characteristics as Jesus?
Think back to the early church. The thing that attracted new members to the faith was the living example of how the Christians related to one another and the world itself –
see how they love one another
was the behavior of a Christian. Seeing that modeled was what brought people to join.
Our reflection for this weekend: think back through your last couple of days. If a stranger were to have followed you around all day long, each day, would that person have been able to respond to a question from someone asking “who you are” by saying
he (or she) is a disciple of Jesus Christ
. By our actions in life, would we be seen as a Christian?

Fr. Tom