This is an icon of Jesus the Good Samaritan. This is what Jesus does. Always. Jesus means Savior. This is what He did (does) for me every single day. It’s not my imagination. It’s not my naive hope in an ‘opium’ that makes me feel better. I know this because I know what my life was before I let Him love me and know what my life has been like since I let Him love me. There’s no comparison.
So, since Jesus is real and is in love with me, how can I keep from singing, like the song says? Today this song takes the form of an invitation for all Catholics who believe what the Church teaches to join me in committing to living out that belief in a more intentional way. That’s one of the lovely dimensions of music, we have to intentionally decide to open our mouths and sing. Singing isn’t automatic to our nature. Neither is a lived Faith. It doesn’t happen on autopilot.
In Porta Fidei, the document with which Benedict XVI opened the Year of Faith, our Pope Emeritus quotes St. Augustine regarding the Credo or Apostles’ Creed: “Not without reason, Christians in the early centuries were required to learn the creed from memory. It served them as a daily prayer not to forget the commitment they had undertaken in baptism. With words rich in meaning, Saint Augustine speaks of this in a homily on the redditio symboli, the handing over of the creed: “the symbol of the holy mystery that you have all received together and that today you have recited one by one, are the words on which the faith of Mother Church is firmly built above the stable foundation that is Christ the Lord. You have received it and recited it, but in your minds and hearts you must keep it ever present, you must repeat it in your beds, recall it in the public squares and not forget it during meals: even when your body is asleep, you must watch over it with your hearts.”
The Credo Commitment for Catholics will then involve a promise to more thoroughly live out their Faith in three ways specifically:
- Praying the Credo (Creed) everyday in an intentional renewal of our baptismal vows.
- Poverty of comfort in some form everyday for the intention of conversion and renewal of our families, especially the person farthest away from God and the Church.
- Proclamation of our Faith everyday by the way we live and forgive. Proclamation using words and deeds!
In the days to come, we will discuss the Credo Commitment and its ramifications in more detail. For now, consider carefully joining Jesus in His Commitment to us: To quote St. Augustine again, ” God created us without our help but He won’t save us without our help.” That is, Jesus is here to save our families, our crumbling society and our Church but He uses us to open the door for Him, just as He used St. Paul and St. Luke to open the door of Lydia’s heart in Phillipi (Acts 16:14). Jesus is going in to rescue those who are dying and we need to step up and help Him.