Lost Boys and Girls

Lost Boys and Girls!

    There is a photo of five young black men who were murdered, and they are a symbol of all of the lost boys and girls in the world. We are all lost boys and girls, and in the process, we lose others. We lose them to our selfishness, racism, and all divisions. My personal email is “Lost boys” because I know I am a “lost boy.”

    Each of us is “saved by grace,” and it is in that grace that we stand, and are called to look at our actions in relation to all of life.

    The Feast of Christ the King was created by Pope Pius XI in 1925, at a time when political extremism and naturalism were threatening Europe and partisans both left and right were each offering a kind of secular salvation, often salvation from partisans on the other side. Sound familiar? In this context, the Church felt it an opportune time to remind the faithful that no political system, party, or candidate will bring about the Kingdom of God and that believers need to be wary of the totalizing claims of politics.

    It has always been a temptation to seek salvation by political means. In fact, in all of history salvation and religion have seldom been separate. When St. Paul taught the early Christians to say “Christ is Lord,” he was subversively co-opting a maxim common in the Roman Empire at the time, namely, “Caesar Is Lord”. To acknowledge Christ as Lord is to relativize the claims of politics on our lives. God is in charge, and no matter who is elected on November 3, we will celebrate Christ the King on November 22. Christ Kingdom of non-violence and love is above all.

    I have donors and friends of all persuasions, we differ and many disagree, some strongly with the way I do ministry, many through the years have walked a way. I am told “you never listen.” In otherwords I do not agree.
    But those who stay, are like a kaleidoscope, where our differences sparkle and melt together radiating love and respect.

    Jesus is clear in how he sees us deal with each other and life:

“Then the King will say to those on his right, “Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty and you gave me drink. I was a stranger and you invited me into our home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.”

    And his life demonstrated one of non-violence-in all areas-and was crucified and rose again demonstrating that victory ultimately comes through non-violence.

    Our calling is to mode our lives around the words of Jesus, and live a life of non-violence.

    We all approach our understanding of this ideal from  different perspectives, and so long as we mode our actions in those differences around providing for the “least of these,” as described by Jesus all is well. We are all sinners, imperfect, working for the Kingdom.

    Dorothy Day did not vote because she would not participate in a “dirty rotten system,” and so for those of us who vote, we need to be aware that our system is “dirty and rotten,” and “hold our nose” as we vote–for there is no perfection in our votes.

    And if our candidate or candidates have different views on an issue dear to our hearts, we are called to respect those he supports, and to move out and actively  work for those he does not, and do so in peace. There is no perfection.

    Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, “All I want to do is do God’s will”, which was love of his neighbor and he gave his life for that love.

    One of my favorite stories is of Ajuan, who would get up in the morning and fight all day, at time shake hands, and sit down and eat with his enemy. In the days ahead let us do the same.

    Krisna, tells us: “what occupies the mind at the time of death determines the destination of our dyings,” and T.S.Elliot clarifies his statement: “The time of death is at every moment.”

    We die many deaths, moving towards our final death, and in each death what occupies our minds shape who we are, and the lives of those around us.

    And in each moment may we love each other in all of our differences, not judge, love God, and our neighbor as ourself–may we be a part of the great kaliescope of love. We are all “lost boys and girls”, and only in God can we be found.  Let us pray:

“Life passes so swiftly. Events that a few years ago kept me totally preoccupied have now become vague memories; conflicts that a few months ago seemed so crucial in my life now seem futile and hardly worth the energy; inner turmoil that robbed me of my sleep only a few weeks ago has now become a strange emotion of the past; books that filled me with amazement a few days ago now do not seem important; thoughts that kept my mind captive a few hours ago have now lost their power and have been replaced by others. .Why am I continuously trapped in this sense of urgency and emergency? Why do I not see that you are eternal, that your kingdom lasts forever, and that for you a thousand years are like one day? O Lord, let me enter into your presence and there taste eternal, timeless, everlasting love with which you invite me to let go of my time-bound anxieties, fears, preoccupations, and worries. .Lord, teach me your ways and give me courage to follow them. Amen. (Henri Nouwen)


Fr. River Sims, D.Min.



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