March 10, 2009

Radical Fratenity: Making the Sacrifice

Over on http://www.Fire.blogtownhall.com I posted a reflection on St. Paul's call to spiritual worship. It involves our bodies into sacrificial offerings to God. The nature of this sacrifice is love. Today, in another interview with Fr. Conrad, he gave me some insight into how this kind of spiritual worship is key to radical fraternity.
In our conversation, he relayed to me a comment made by Fr. Groeschel to the Friars. He explained that as he has come into his 70's, he suddenly realized how little he has done for the Lord. He exhorted the Friars to make heroic sacrifices while they are still young. He asserted, "It doesn't get any easier."
My mind goes to something that Mother Theresa explained. Namely, one cannot love except at one's own expense. When our love does not really cost us anything, it is not really love. Real love pours out until it hurts. This is what Jesus did for us on the Cross -- it is what St. Paul says we need to do with our lives in return.
How is this related to radical fraternal? Radical means to go into the "roots." Radical fraternity goes into the roots of fraternity itself -- and all Christian fellowship is to be rooted in Christ - or its not. When we root our fellowship with one another in Christ, his sacrificial love for us becomes the standard and the source for the way we love one another - a love without measure. Most of us shy away from this kind of life. It demands too much at least for now. We imagine taking it up, later in life, when we are ready. But this is the putting off game. Fr. Groschel's words to the Friars are words we all need to hear -- it doesn't get any easier the longer we wait. We need to make our great sacrifices for God now - while we have the energy and the time to make them.