Bishop Thomas Gumbletonby Bishop Thomas Gumbleton
Pax Christi USA Teacher of Peace

I always find it fascinating and marvelous that when we’re celebrating some special event, as we are today — the 25th anniversary of Christ the Redeemer Parish — we might be tempted to look for special readings, too, that we think might be appropriate for what we’re celebrating. Yet if we just go to the readings that are assigned, as we do this Sunday, we discover that they totally fit the context of this event.

Light.of.the.worldTwenty-five years ago, a small group of people gathered for the first time and became the community of disciples of Jesus called Christ the Redeemer Parish. And they would have been challenged, 25 years ago, to be the salt of the earth — to preserve the goodness and the benefits of what Jesus teaches. Salt is a preservative, and to give it attractiveness, tastiness … they were challenged to be a light to the world around them — a community of disciples that, by its very presence, sends forth a message that lights up the world and lights up the way of God for people to follow.

Now today, we are gathered to celebrate those 25 years, but also I think this Gospel calls us obviously to recommit ourselves — this community of disciples gathered here, and in this area of the archdiocese of Detroit — to be the light for all people. This is a powerful message that is contained in the idea of being light. It’s Jesus’ drawing on a powerful, prophetic tradition when he challenges the community to be the light of the world and to give light for those who surround us.

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