We often speak about the beautiful gift that is to have a good father and mother. Having good parents can make a big difference in any child’s life, for we know that a good parent will listen in acknowledgment of our dignity and provide us with guidance as required. A good parent will support, correct, praise, and admonish as needed, and set rules and boundaries that ensure our safety. The goal of the good parent is to establish a loving environment where they can share of their love, experience, and wisdom. A good parent is indeed a treasure.
We know very well that we have not all been blessed with great parents, and I pray for all of us who are, in reality, physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual orphans. We pray for a parental figure to care for us, help us, and nurture in us that which is needed for us to develop rightly. Sometimes we get to select who is that person in our lives, but sometimes the person selects us.
And it is a blessing to have not only those parental figures who nurture our physical and mental well-being, but also spiritual parents who nurture our spiritual well-being. Some of our spiritual parents are here on earth, and some watch over us from Heaven.
Every February 4th, the Eymardian family (Sacramentinos) celebrates the birthday of our founder, Saint Peter Julian Eymard. He is known to the world as the Apostle of the Eucharist, but for us, Eymardians, we know him as our spiritual father.
A spiritual father listens in acknowledgment, provides guidance as required, and supports and corrects. Through our spiritual father’s lessons, we are taught how to grow in the spiritual life. As I read through the writings of Father Eymard, I often imagine myself sitting by his side and asking for his guidance in a quiet conversation...
Me: “Father Eymard, tell me. Am I personally loved by God?”
Me: “Father Eymard, tell me. How can I recognize God?”
Me: “Father Eymard, I get so tired and become burdened by life. Most of the time I do not know what to do. How do I grow my spiritual life?”
Me: “Father Eymard, all that you are saying sounds quite difficult.”
Let us learn from the many lessons Saint Peter Julian Eymard shares and grow, that we may fulfill our call to a well-developed spiritual life. Let us live a rich Eucharistic life steeped in thanksgiving for all our Lord Jesus has done for us. May we all grow to emulate Saint Peter Julian Eymard and become spiritual fathers [mothers] to those in need of our love and guidance.
Let us pray: Our Lord, Jesus Christ. We thank you for your loving gift of self in the Eucharist. Thank you for giving us Saint Peter Julian Eymard to help guide us to you. Father Eymard, thank you for your heroic gift of self, the lessons on recognizing Christ Eucharistic, and the advice on how to live the Eucharistic life. May all your spiritual children help bring about a Eucharistic revival. That the heart of our Lord Jesus, in the Most Blessed Sacrament, be praised, adored, and loved with grateful affection, at every moment, in all the tabernacles of the world, even to the end of time. Amen.