The Church of Saint Agnes

1680 Dixie Highway, Fort Wright, KY 41011

The Church of Saint Agnes
1680 Dixie Highway, Fort Wright, KY 41011

Saint Agnes School | Contact Us

9th Week in Ordinary Time

Date: 
Thu, 06/04/2015
Author: 
Rev. Msgr. Donald Enzweiler

Finally, we hear of someone with the correct priorities.
Not in the newspaper, not within a television program.
But within the bible, within the Holy Scriptures:  Tobiah and Sarah.
And I shouldn’t say finally; their story has been around for centuries.
They put God before their own sexual desires and urges.
They stopped and prayed before entering their marriage bed for the first time.
How many of you did that?  (You don’t have to raise your hands.)
 
I used to give couples a blessing for their marriage bed.
I encouraged them to pray it together before consummating their sacramental relationship.
I don’t do this anymore.
Fifteen years ago or so I realized that nearly every couple had already consummated their love.
This reflects the commonly held belief of our time
that the ultimate expression and experience of love between two people
is the mutual participation in any acts that result in sexual pleasure and release.
Now I realize I might be accused of being a celibate who has no business in this arena.
But I am about God’s business.  Tobiah and Sarah were about God’s business.
They went to their marriage bed with their minds and hearts
on God’s plan for their lives together.
God had a purpose in their coming together married.
They knew they were fulfilling God’s will for them.  They put God first and themselves second.
 
Someday I may conduct a survey, ask married couples:
“what were you thinking about as you entered your marriage bed?”
I may even take it a step further and ask “when you are sexually intimate….
1.) are you ever thinking about God?
and 2.) how are you thinking about this person you are with?
What loving thoughts are you having about this other person?”
I’m not being voyeuristic.
I’m simply trying to demythologize, uncover the error concerning the commonly held belief
about sexual intimacy as being the most profound experience of human love.
 
Today’s Gospel reminds us of the first commandment,
that is, what is to be first on our list of priorities:  love God above all things and in all things.
What this says to me is that the highest, most fulfilling, experience of human love
happens between a person and God and not what happens between two human beings.
It is a spiritual venture, not a physical one.
And until this truth is accepted,
no matter what pleasurable physical sensations are experienced
there will be an emptiness, a sense of incompleteness, the feeling that something is missing
with regards to the human heart.
 
If people want to call me an iconoclast, a person who destroys what others worship, so be it.
We worship God.  To worship anything or anyone else is idolatry.
I believe human sexuality has become the idol of our times.
“Redirect our hearts and our minds, O Lord.  Help us to love you above all things.  Amen!”