St. Augustine Catholic Church
Sunday, May 9, 2021
Sixth Sunday of Easter
FINDING LOVE THROUGH UNDERSTANDING AND FORGIVENESS
The most wonderful thing about Jesus, Mary and the Trinity is their incredible love for all of us. We can’t know why except that they do, for which we are incredibly grateful. But when we find one who does not love us, this can be very disturbing, especially disturbing if it is one of our parents. It is even more disturbing when it is our mother. By God’s grace, most mothers are very loving of their children, but I know that not all are filled with love.
This past week Channel 9 aired a documentary on the life of author, Amy Tan. She has authored many books, but the most prominent was called The Joy Luck Club, which talked somewhat about her growing up. In the documentary, she revealed that her mother was cold, abusive, and sometimes crazy. Tan seemed to mentally suppress her feelings in her adult life, but on one occasion while trying to write a book, she hit a dry spell. She thought it might help if she learned more about her mother before she, Amy, was born.
Her mother had had a horrible life in China. She had to do numerous unsavory things to survive, and ultimately had to abandon three of her children just to survive herself. As Amy listened and learned, she began to realize that her mother’s experiences and fears had been instrumental in shaping her mother’s personality. As she listened and learned, Amy began to forgive and love her mother, who for the most part, she feared and hated. Amy was so unhappy that as a young married woman she chose not to have children for fear that she would treat them as she had been treated. Amy was forced through her dry spell to look for new inspiration in writing; and through listening, patience, and understanding, she began to love and receive it in return.
Our second reading and the Gospel speak eloquently of Jesus’ love for us and how we are expected to love Him and one another. The life of Amy Tan can be a great way of helping each of us to understand our parents and others. When the going gets tough, we must turn to Jesus and Mary. Love is not always easy, but through opening ourselves to Jesus, we are filled with the Holy Spirit and love comes naturally.