Like a mother bird gently or not so gently pushes her baby out of the nest to fly into the great big world out there, we are summoned out of the cocoon of God’s embrace during Mass into the world. But I am not ready! I forgot to pay closer attention to the homily while my child was squirming in the pew. Wait a minute! I must of blanked out there for a moment, thinking about my week ahead? We are done? I am not sure I am ready to head back out again.
Or…finally! Mass is over–time to go back to the real world and my own life again. I can’t wait to get out of here…hopefully these are not our feelings too often…
In any case we are directed to go in peace. We are called by God to live differently outside the walls of the church. Live transformed, thus transforming the world around you. That transformation is different for each of us, but we are transformed when we are in God’s presence and feasting at the table and listening at the feet of Jesus. It may be dramatic or very subtle, but transforming just the same. We go in peace, transformed, equipped to transform the world around us.
How do we go out in peace–one step at a time, one conversation at a time, one relationship at a time, one moment at a time. We are not called to solve all the world’s problems–to the world’s Savior. That’s already been done. But we can be the person who is there for that troubled teen, struggling family, dying mother, or angered, demoralized person who sees no hope or future. We go in peace even when no one is around to see us.
We live in peace. We are peace. Allow the peace of God’s love infiltrate every fiber of your being. When we are at peace, we can be peace for others. What a blessed experience to share the peace of Christ we know and experience in each moment, with someone else who is in need of peace in their lives–through that smile, touch, acknowledgement or word of love.
We all know turmoil to some degree. We see it all around us. But, let us go out and help this world (the person next to you, or the person around the world) go in peace, no longer afraid or hopeless, but filled with the certainty of love, of a brighter tomorrow because peace is our now–not in some far off time or place. It is ours now. Peace is ours, thus we go in peace to serve the Lord and one another.
Go In Peace
“GO IN THE PEACE OF CHRIST…
However we came
however confused or discouraged
or afraid or alone
we may have been
before this Eucharist
we are told to leave in peace.
Presumably something has happened here:
We have found direction and courage
been in communion,
thereby discovering the peace of Christ.
‘Thanks be to God.’
THE MASS IS ENDED: GO IN PEACE
we have been changed
in the actions of this Eucharist,
in coming together,
submitting to God’s Word
and sharing his table,
therein learning the peace of Christ,
‘Thanks be to God.’
GO IN PEACE TO LOVE AND SERVE THE LORD…
however full of suffering
however plain and ordinary
our everyday lives
we are told now to return there
knowing what the Lord has done for us
and what he commissions us to do:
‘The dawn from on high
has broken upon us
and has set our feet
in the path of peace.’
‘Thanks be to God.'”*
Reprinted from Liturgical Gestures, Words, Objects, Barbara Schmich in Eleanor Bernstein, CSJ, ed. © 1995 Notre Dame Center for Pastoral Liturgy. Used with permission.