Saturday of the Seventh Week in Ordinary Time

My young nephew recently asked me, “Uncle Vincent, what’s God’s last name?”

“A very good question!  Why do you want to know about God’s last name?”  I asked these and other questions, buying time for myself to come up with an appropriate response, one that wasn’t heretical or blasphemous, one that wouldn’t lead him astray or confuse him, one that was faithful to the tradition and scripture and all the rest.  In the end, I blurted out, “God’s last name is ‘of the Universe’”.

No human –– past, present, or future –– was, is, or shall be able to grasp the great mystery of God.  We can theologize and grasp at understanding through our faith, and yet, all of our combined efforts at naming who God is are still more unlike God than like Him.

We don’t give up, of course, in our deepening knowledge of and intimate closeness with this “God of the Universe.”  But, we would do well sometimes to be like the little children in today’s gospel, whom Jesus “embraced” and “blessed” and “placed his hands upon.”

More in the heart than in the head, these little children intuited the God-man for who He was: the expression of the Father’s love for humanity.

O good Jesus, give me the faith of a little child, who trusts in you with all his or her heart!

March 1st, 2014