Sunday, February 26, 2012

Song & Dance

The phrase "song and dance" very often means to "beat around the bush" or to "dance around the issue" - otherwise to avoid the issue at hand and use diversionary tactics to either avoid addressing the issue head on or to soften the blow of sharing unpleasant news.  I witnessed a "song & dance" routine recently at Mass as the issue of responding to the Bishop's annual appeal was explained to the congregation.  In this day and age of a tight economy it is difficult, to say the least, to make a request for a donation from people who have been coping with loss of income and increasing prices. How this was handled during Holy Mass was an inspiration for others to follow - serious and with just the right amount of levity.  The message got across to the people and gave them a laugh at he same time.

Although this worked very well in this situation - when sharing the message of the Gospel - there is no room for any "song and dance".  The Gospel demands a serious but welcoming sharing of the message of God's Love and Redemption and Forgiveness. There is no way to sugar coat the Gospel.   Sin must be addressed and sinners called out of their corners of hiding into the Light that is Christ.  They must be made aware that their sins are recognized, not particularly by you or I, but by God Almighty.  In this recognition they also need to know that God does not damn them, but rather calls them to be refreshed and cleansed in the waters of baptism and at the altar of reconciliation.  

Jesus approaches each of us in Lent and proclaims "repent and believe in the Gospel"! Come to Him who heals - to Him that forgives - to Him that loves - to Him that restores. Come to Jesus and He will give you reason to burst out in praise and song and dance. 

Deacon Dale