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Thursday, 2 April 2015

Mistaken Identity

Pondering on my own sins and the lack of holiness in my mind, heart, imagination, soul, body, I was reminded that Christ's Identity was mistaken by those who thought they were holier than most. Too often, if we are not in "serious sin", we can forget who the really holy men and women are.

The members of the Sanhedrin, as we read this week, condemned a Man Whom they thought was a threat to their religion. Now, some Protestants and some rebellious Catholics who do not believe in the institutionalized Church see Christ as the Great Rebel against organized religion.

This is a case of mistaken identity. Christ established His religion, continuing the Revelation of the Old Covenant by making a New Covenant based on Himself., the Messiah, the Saviour, the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords.

But, we too misread people's identities. I would like to mention a few of these faux pas which I have made myself in my life, learning the hard way, that holiness is not always obvious, and that those who seem holy may very well not be. It is not actions which reveal holiness, but the love for God, the love of the Truth.

Years ago, I met a woman who was not educated beyond high school. She has proved to be one of the holiest and most humble persons I know, full of grace and truth. She never reads blogs, or never goes on line. She has never taken a theology course in her life. She is on her way to being a great saint and few know this. She is a barber.

Another person I met a long time ago is also uneducated, a man who taught me to have a devotion to the Divine Mercy, which I did not at the time, and renewed my saying the daily rosary. This person does not have a college degree, and has had a sad and unfulfilled life. Yet, he is on his way to being a saint as well. He is poor, and on state-aid. He prays the Divine Office daily. His children ignore him.

Two other ladies looked like ordinary working women, one single, another still young and busy, but they had powerful experiences of conversion and freedom from horrible past sins, plus being raised in the era of either no catechesis, or very poor teaching of the Faith. Both of these ladies have been brought to a great maturity of Faith by God in an extremely short period of time. In other words, what I had to learn over a lifetime, God taught them in months, yes, months because they are humble and ask Him for grace. They are on their way to becoming great saints.

My last example may be the strongest. Many people I know mistake this person for a public sinner, and yet, she is the most holy and pious person I have ever met. living in penance for early sins, sins which people in her community seem to know. No one knows her personal struggles to stay holy, and yet, she is, imho, the holiest person I know on this earth She is a veritable Mary Magdalen, and God gives her infused knowledge born out of pain and suffering. She is brilliant, loving, and one of the most humble persons I have ever met, not content to look at her many talents, but only on her inadequacies. She is on her way to becoming a great saint. I feel honored to just listen to her speak of holy things, of the knowledge of divine things.

Mistaken identities....the saints are most likely not those prancing about the altar as Eucharistic Ministers, or the teachers of RCIA, or the leaders of charismatic prayer groups. The saints are not those necessarily who have retreat centers and charge for spiritual direction.

The saints are not obvious....neither was Christ to those who did not want to see with the Eyes of God.