Whether saints, the ordained, or laypeople; we are all called to glorify God in our everyday lives. As the late Bl. Mother Teresa once quoted, “Not all of us can do great things, but we can do small things with great love.” And, what is this thing we call love? Well, if you’re an atheist, the only explanation your worldview can give is a mere chemical reaction; since we hold no soul and are no more than intelligent animals. Saint Thomas Aquinas, the 13th century philosopher and Doctor of the Church, defined love as – “To will the good of another.” No better example of love do we have than through Christ’s death on the cross. He came, selflessly, to be put to death for us; offering up His life as a loving atonement for all. Scripture also tells us, “Greater love than this no man hath, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13). And indeed, He treated all as friends – from the Roman soldiers who mocked and beat him, to Simon of Cyrene – who helped Jesus bear His cross (Mark 15:21). Christ never uttered a hateful remark; which the Roman soldiers were very well familiar with during crucifixions. According to the Roman philosopher Cicero 106-24 BC, tongues were cut out of victims because of the blasphemies and rage they spewed; and the Jewish historian Josephus AD 37-100, added – “the most wretched of deaths.” But, Our Lord, despite his agony during the Passion – sweating drops of blood knowing the cup which he was to drink of; Loved us by praying these words, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; yet not as I will, but as you will.”
And for this we proclaim – O Most Holy Redeemer, I thank you. And forgive me my transgressions, which crucify you anew in my heart.
So, let’s be Simon’s of Cyrene, helping Christ bear his cross; not because He can’t, but because through this sanctifying action, a daily action – we journey with him until we reach our Golgotha (the place of the skull), death! Which will not be our end, but a beginning to new life.