from the Companion Directors Team
Every year throughout the United States hundreds of students graduate from school. And every year hundreds of graduation ceremonies take place. It doesn’t matter if a student is graduating from kindergarten, 8th grade, high school or college they still have a sense of hope and a fire of enthusiasm that is amazing to see. The speeches that the graduates share with their classmates and community are also filled with that same fire. It doesn’t matter if the speech was written 20 years ago or this year, each is full of optimism and promise for the future. After hearing these speeches, one cannot help but be filled with hope.
So what would our Companions or Members of the Precious Blood community say to the class of 2015? In a world that is so troubled and at times one that feels so fractured and divided, it is hard to find hope. It is easy to be discouraged and feel that our actions may not be of any help, and the usual enthusiasm that one feels at graduations might be diminished because of the hopelessness of the times. But Saint Gaspar reminded us that in our journey of life there may be times that appear bleak but that we are not alone, God is with us and loves us beyond measure. He writes, “The love of God excites us to think, to speak and to act and suffer for his great divine glory. It is like a flame that consumes in us everything that might slow down our more intimate union with the highest good. However, let us allow the Lord to purify us with that holy flame so that we can be as de Sales say, irrevocably his entirely” (#3669). What a comfort in these challenging times to know that there is a love this deep that is given to us. This is the love and spirit that energized the early Christian communities to stand up and speak clearly about Jesus. This is the love and spirit that propelled the early community of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood to stand up and speak clearly about the Precious Blood of Jesus. And this love and spirit is what continues to energize and inspire the Precious Blood community of our day.
This has been evident to us as we have traveled throughout the country and heard the stories of how Companions are living out their Precious Blood spirituality. Companions are caring for their families and friends with unfailing devotion. They are reaching out with compassion to those who stand outside the circles of our community and welcoming them with love, the same love that is freely given to them by God. They are supporting and caring for their parish communities by stepping out and answering the needs that are addressed. They are reaching out to those who are on the margins of society, in prisons, homeless shelters, feeding the hungry, caring for children who have no adult support in their lives and the list goes on and on. They are providing a prayerful presence to their fellow Companions and Missionaries of the Precious Blood and different community events and through their prayer intentions throughout the year. The spirit of Saint Gaspar that proclaimed that we should be excited about the love that God offers us is clearly evident and lived out in their lives each day.
We believe that Companions would share with the Class of 2015 their vision for the future, to “step out, stand up and speak clearly about the Precious Blood of Jesus.” It is a vision that continues to inspire and motivate Companions and would motivate the Class of 2015 as well.