When I was about done with my time in the seminary, we were driving on our way back from downtown and decided to stop at Wendy’s on the way home for a quick bite. (Wendy’s is the best by the way). As we were in the drive-thru, we noticed the car behind us and it was Archbishop Chaput. We decided to tell the lady who was taking our order to give our grandfather behind us a frosty. He got a nice chuckle out of it.
We always enjoyed playing around the Archbishop Chaput. He always will have a special place in my heart. He came into this diocese when it was in bad shape and left it in a much more stable position. In my mind, he was like a firefighter who was the first to arrive in the scene and put his life on the line to put the fire out.
His care for the people was truly remarkable. He would wake up every morning and answer e-mails from everyone and anyone. He loved his seminarians and called them “my beloved”. We were also one of his first ordination classes.
Always loved that word - beloved. It is in our second reading today that Jesus is referred to as the “beloved”. The one who is loved by the Father. This word expressed an all-encompassing love. To be loved totally. Jesus existed in this love. He healed in this love. He brought people back from the dead in this love. He performed miracles in this love. He died in this love. He rose from the dead because of this love. It is through this love that we participate in the divine life of God. It is through Christ and our Baptism that we become His “beloved”.
And so, my beloved parishioners, know that you are beloved. Loved by God totally, through and through. It is through this love that we are saved.
May the Lord give you His peace,