Any human being who is alert is conscious of the tension, the conflict that goes on between light and darkness around them and within their own hearts. St Francis de Sales said the border line between the kingdom of darkness and the kingdom of light passes through every human heart.
For members of the Catholic community in Ireland and in many other places in the world these are very difficult days when the awareness of that struggle is hard and painful. The church is being purified and that work has to go deep. We are called to live out our Christian commitment in a time of darkness and uncertainty.
The struggle is real but so is the strength and courage that comes from the good Christ at this time.
As Christians we are not meant to downplay the reality of this struggle with darkness within our church and in our very hearts. We experience it; we see the consequences of it all around us. But if we are not meant to deny the darkness nor are we meant to be overwhelmed by it.
The Lord knows what he is doing. I do not need to know how his grace is working as he purifies and brings healing. He alone can bring light from darkness, grace from sin and sorrow and shame, good from mess and failure.
Only his light can drive out darkness. And that is what he is doing now.
So now is the time for us to stand steady in that light.
Now more than ever we are called to hold firm, take heart and open ourselves as a faith community to receive from the Risen Christ the compassion that heals and frees us from the past, the trust that gives us courage in the present, and the wisdom and integrity that will enlighten our future path.