Prince William married Catherine Middleton today. I was struck not only by the beauty and joy of the couple, but with the beautiful and wise words from the Rt Rev. Richard Chartre, Bishop of London. It was a joyful day, full of hope for these two young people who were brave enough to pledge their lives to one another. And, it was a really fabulous homily.
Chartre mentioned love finding its center beyond ourselves, evoking in my mind, the theologian, Bonhoeffer, who wrote of Christ as our center. He spoke of the spiritual mystery that when we follow the example of Christ and give to each other, turning away from our selfish natures. We find that the more love we give, the richer we become in soul and our spiritual beauty is revealed. Our loving and giving transforms us into the people that God intended us to be.
He spoke of our need in this coming century to approach the world with loving wisdom, showing reverence for our relationships with life, the earth, and one another. It is not more knowledge we need, but the wise use of the power of the discoveries of the past century.
What struck me the first time I heard this homily was the following:
“As the reality of God has faded from so many lives in the west, there has been a corresponding inflation of expectations that personal relations alone will supply meaning and happiness in life. This is to load our partner with too great a burden. We are all incomplete. We all need the love which is secure rather than oppressive We need mutual forgiveness to thrive. As we move toward our partner in love in Christ, the Holy Spirit is quickened within us and increasingly can fill our life with light.”
May Catherine and William live out that beautiful image of love, faithfulness and forgiveness, remembering that they are not alone in their marriage, but are supported by the love of Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit. May those who are married and contemplating marriage be strengthened and encouraged by these words from a wise spiritual counselor.
May the reality of God and God’s love continue to increase in your lives. May you find the joy of love and faithfulness and mutual respect and forgiveness.
You can find the entire homily, not only on YouTube at the Royals site, but also here, in text form:
Royal Wedding Homily
Thank you to Nancy Bush for providing the link to the homily. It was a wonderful and thoughtful piece. You can read Nancy’s blog at: http://dancingpastthedark.wordpress.com/