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In August of 2009 , we celebrated Our Lady Of Guadalupe at Jobing.Com with thousands of those who love her - something like 25,000 I think. Bishop Olmsted preached a wonderful homily in which he used a teaching of Swiss Theologian Hans Urs Von Balthazar. People can be attracted to God, the latter teaches, through the desire for holiness, or through a love for truth, or by His beauty, or by all three. The Mother of God, of course shines with all three, in the likeness of God, and we can be attracted to her by any one of the three or even by all three. This fit so beautifully with our Bishop's homily. Truth does appeal to me very much, and holiness calls my name all the time. These abide, but it is beauty that I cannot resist. God is love - that is His defining core. And love is the most beautiful thing in the world. Love makes whatever it touches beautiful. St. Therese said, "It is love alone that draws me." Of all the virtues, love is the undisputed crown - " These three abide, faith, hope, and love, but the greatest of these is love." Rene Girard, the Catholic Philosopher I mentioned in the last blog says God is beautiful in his oneness - the beautiful integration of his three persons in mutual love. Of course it is humility and love that drive this Divine charity, which is then communicated to those who love Him, that they might become like Him. When we look at creation - humankind as well as nature, we see stunning beauty everywhere we look. Even in its fallen state the beauty of its creator shines through. I cringe when I think of Jansenism and it's lies about God, still with us today, twisting our Merciful God into a monster who eats his own children. God is beautiful, and loving Him means loving all that He loves - all of humanity and every part of His creation - even the little sparrow. If God were just the two, holiness and truth, I would have a hard time recognizing that He is God....He would be no better than a super version of the rest of us, and He would have to throw me away because I couldn't meet His high standards. But He does not throw me away and simply cannot, because he loves me - and for me, that is ultimate beauty. It is His beautiful love - UNTO THE END - that wins my heart and my loyalty, even when truth seems cold and holiness intimidates. Souls, Therese said, are as different as faces, so you will have your own story. It is wonderful that God is such a good fisherman, and knows just what bait will attract us!

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