Today, Zimmerman has selected a rainbow to decorate the ornament. The children’s reflections were on the very familiar story of Noah, his ark, and God’s covenant of love for his people.
I would like to talk about the rainbow as the symbol that LGBTQ+ people use to identify and give voice to the spectrum of human sexuality and gender, and how God asks us to make sure we are sharing his love with these people.
I would begin by saying that people have been identifying as LGBTQ+ since God made humans. It is documented in ancient histories and present in indigenous nations. This is not a new thing.
During Advent, as we are scrutinizing our lives, we need to take a stern look at how we treat this community. Let’s face it, as Catholics, we have an abominable record in regard to treatment of gay members of the body of Christ.
It is hard for me not to see the hypocrisy of our teaching against gay marriage as the sins of members of our clergy are laid bare.
In the not so distant past, the church not only condoned slavery, but religious communities owned people of color in the United States. This has, of course, since changed. Our attitudes about the LGBTQ+ community must change as well.
Today, as we think about the rainbow and all of its meanings, let us think about our behavior towards our sisters and brothers in Christ. Are we kind and compassionate in our words and actions? Do we save them a place at the Supper of the Lord?
Every person who has been baptized has been claimed for Christ. Sam Rocha, professor at the University of British Columbia says, “the mystical directions and movements of grace can be mistaken for blasphemy. God’s mercy challenges the human measure of justice.”
What if we have it all wrong?
What if Jesus wants a more inclusive church here on earth? What if the blasphemy of this inclusion is really the Grace of God?
Maybe the current body of Christ had better be hoping and praying that the mercy of God is greater than we can imagine.
Maybe we are the ones most in need of his healing grace.