To love God first! Mark 12: 28b-34

Deuteronomy says: “Fear the Lord with all your heart, with all your soul and with your entire mind” Jesus through Mark clearly articulates the one directive that will lead us to heaven.

In making decisions about the direction of our lives both communally and individually we should always connect with the essential tenets of our Church, ‘to love God and to love our neighbor.’ What He means is that I must love with as a whole person; who is a unity of the spiritual, the intellectual and the physical.

How do we love God in this way?  We can only love God through the Church by conforming our lives to Christ’s. We need to ask one another and ourselves: ‘What does the Church tell us Jesus would do?’

To love with all our heart means our desires and passions; all of which need to be brought to Jesus as the ultimate measuring stick, and if they do not conform to His life, to get rid if them.

To love with all our soul means through our prayer, our worship, our personality, and the reality of who we have become, these things need to measure up to Christ. And if they don’t, if we need to change, then we should increase our involvement in the sacraments of confession and Eucharist; adopting these as a guide for everyday living.

To love with all our mind means to think critically, making decisions as a result of our profession of faith make each week together as the People of God. We are a Catholic people and need to see our Catholicity as an integral part of our whole life not just a part of it.

As citizens, we will have the opportunity to exercise our right to vote. These national elections will set a new course for us as a nation.  We should not enter this day fragmented. We should not separate what we believe from how we vote.  We vote as citizens yes, but Catholic citizens who recognize the dignity of the human person and have the God given right to say so in public if we so choose.

Think critically in making your electoral decisions, investigate what the candidates believe, weigh it against what Christ teaches and with prayer make an informed choice.

Let it be said of us, when we are gone from this earth, “Well done! You were right in saying-  He is the one and there is no other than he!” And, when Jesus looks to us and sees what we have done in our lives, may he say: “You are not far from the Kingdom of God.”