Lessons From 50th IEC, 2012

Two months ago, my priest-formator asked me to make a photo slideshow of the events captured last 50th International Eucharistic Congress held in Dublin, Ireland. He showed me a lot of pictures he took during that event which he intended to show among us seminarians. With that photo slideshow, he asked me to accompany it with the theme song of the Congress entitled “Though We are Many”. At once, I fell in love with the song. The song has a simple melody, and I feel everyone may easily be familiar with the song. Then I realized three practical, important lessons for us, “pilgrims of faith”.

First, loving Jesus makes us decide “like Jesus”. This is a practical lesson because there are issues today affecting our lives. To think “like Jesus” is to think according to the Gospel. Hence, one who loves Jesus may perhaps have in their minds questions like “What would Jesus do given this situation?” or “What would Jesus tell me about this today?” On a more concrete way, loving Jesus makes us all the more discrete, cautious and prudent on how we decide. These are some qualities which mark how a person loves God and neighbor.

Second, loving Jesus makes us “Bible-lovers”. This is also a practical lesson because there is a need to appreciate the Bible today. Indeed, the Bible is inspired, yet its sacred writers share what they experience when they love the Lord. Perhaps, more than a literary compilation of works, the Bible in fact tells us to see how God works in our lives. Hence, this widens our perspective of reality, not in pessimism, but in hope. That is why it is to good to share our experiences and treasure it within our hearts. This is where we learn to be thankful and to heal ourselves of the pains of the past, and look forward in hope.

Third, loving Jesus makes us “spirit-filled” persons. The place of the Holy Spirit in our lives is significant because He inspires everyone doing good. “Spirit-filled” persons are persons who are dynamic and alive. These people celebrate life, and it “affects” other people. People who are witnesses of love are people who never stop saying good things about God and their neighbor. They are simple on how they think, decide, and speak. They are honest people. Because of this, they influence other people in a dynamic and in a special way.

Perhaps, it is a good resolution after all, to be a prayerful person. Prayer makes us appreciate who we are. Prayer heals us of our past. Prayer gives us inner peace and joy. And prayer makes us “commune in Christ and with one another” (from the IEC 2012 theme”). No wonder that people who are prayerful are people not only of words, but charity-filled actions.

So, PRAY – and everything follows. Have it as a “heart to heart” with Jesus. Jesus loves us, so can we.