Reflections by Fr. Peter McVerry at the General Assembly

Reflections by Fr. Peter McVerry at the General Assembly, Friday 13th March 2015.

What is the best way to move forward in a changing situation? This calls for a spirituality of change, of letting go. Every gift in life has to be let go of. The only exception to this is the infinite unconditional love of God which is a gift given to us for all eternity.

Where is security to be found? It is in what is unchangeable. Society today tells us the opposite, stressing that security can be found in an accumulation of material things, rather than in love. So the spirituality of change has to challenge the world’s pressures. The enemy of spirituality is the attachment to things and/or to people. Our call as Christians is to let go in joy and not in fear, or only with a sense of loss.

The more we can experience the love of God, the deeper our rootedness and the easier it is to let go of attachments. How do I experience this love?  Fundamentally it is in silence, alone, at times when I can let the memories of life pass before me and give thanks for them, recognizing all the gifts I have been given and all the love that is there. An image might be….. on the surface of the lake it is windy and rough, but if I dive deep down to the bottom, there I can sit in the quiet…..

The great gift of the breath encapsulates all the gifts we are given in life. At our death, we no longer experience God through our breath but as we let go of our last breath, our experience of God is then directly, face to face. At this moment, we find God and experience infinite life and love directly.

The only route to peace and justice is through letting go of what we have so that others may have more. The only route to lifting the poor out of poverty is to share what we have, rather than thinking that it comes with economic growth. Our model in this is Jesus who gave up all for us at the crucifixion. His death was not just the consequence of His struggle for justice, but  it is the path that leads to justice and to peace.