The Spiritual Power of the Family

by Father Brian J. Soliven on Sunday September 17, 2023

How do we want to be remembered when we die? When our end finally comes, the words that people will say about us will be our legacy. The stories that people will tell about us will be a testimony to how we lived. What will they say? He was kind. He was a loving father. He sacrificed his life for the good of the family. He was a person of deep love for Jesus Christ? He was a faithful Christian. St. Paul in the second reading in today’s Mass, speaks to the heart of the matter. “No one lives for oneself, and no one dies for oneself. For if we live, we live for the Lord, and if we die, we die for the Lord.” (Cf. Romans 14:7-8). 


He is speaking here of the mystery of our baptism. When the cold water flowed over our heads and the priest said the ancient words, “I baptize you in the name of Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit”, our eternal lives were changed forever. We became part of the body of Jesus Christ in a radical new way. We were incorporated into him. A baptized Christian becomes intimately united to Jesus, so much so, that he lives in us, and we, in him. Another way of thinking about this great mystery is to imagine two pieces of melted wax infusing together. That is the theological background of which St. Paul is speaking about. He would intensify this meaning in his Letter to the Galatians, when he famously wrote, “It is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me.” (Cf. Galatians 2:20).