This Sunday's Gospel is the story of the woman at the well. At one point Jesus says to her, "The day is coming - in fact, it is already here, when people will worship the Father neither on the mountain nor in Jerusalem. They will worship the Father in Spirit and in truth. God is Spirit and true worshippers will worship him in Spirit." So what do we do when our Temple (the mountain/Jerusalem) is taken from us? During the Babylonian captivity, the Israelites lived in slavery, in exile. No Temple, all religious practice forbidden. Yet by those rivers of Babylon, where people wept and yearned for Mount Zion, their Temple, what emerged were the most beautiful writings in the Old Testament, The Psalms. This people had to look inwardly. These psalms speak beautifully and insightfully about every possible human emotion. It is a people reflecting on their lives, on their existence on this planet, and on God, - with no external religious practice. Perhaps there is a deep lesson in that for all Christians, one which we are being forced to look at now. I've often quoted at Mass a mystic who stated that humanity will evolve no further until people choose responsibility over religion. It looks as if we are all going to find out what he meant when he said that. We are being asked to take responsibility perhaps. Over the next few weekends I will try and provide some suggestions as to how we can use our Sunday mornings - based on that Sunday's gospel - to do what the Israelites did, reflect on our lives, who we have become, and the presence of 'I am who am' within each one of us. We are all Temples of Gods Holy Spirit. Wouldn't it be a wonderful thing if out of this difficult time, we could salvage something beautiful?
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