Saturday, January 21, 2006

Ordinary Time

Often people make comments after Mass about the use of the term, "Ordinary Time," as in the Third Sunday of Ordinary Time (tomorrow). Of course, it is a sort of default period in which no great liturgical feasts or celebrations are taking place. Yet there is something very rich and subtle in this designation because it covers the weeks in the liturgical year that mimic many stretches of our own lives. Days, weeks, months and even years which are basically uneventful and mundane. Perhaps we are remembering a recent Christmas or family part, or looking forward to a vacation or a new baby. Right now we are in-between. We are doing much more than simply waiting or marking time. We are living each day in the fullest way possible. Ordinary Time in the liturgical year invites us to see and receive the gift of such intervals and to be ready for the unexpected to break into our ordinary time to claim our attention. We are blessed.