Sharing Christ’s Merciful Yoke of Solidarity
1. Yoke-Sharing with Christ:
You don’t need to read much of the life of Catherine McAuley or many of her writings to know that the words and example of Jesus Christ were the main motivation of her entire adult life. As we saw this morning, all the early biographical manuscripts speak of her “desire to resemble” Jesus Christ “which was her daily resolution, and the lesson she constantly repeated”. In the Practical Sayings, Clare Moore tells us that Catherine repeatedly said:
The study of a Religious should be the life and maxims of Jesus Christ; this Divine Model should be in her regard like a book continually open before her. . . .
We find those who can enumerate very particularly all that Jesus Christ said and did, but what does He care for that? He said and did so, not that we should recount it in words, but shew Him in our lives, in our daily practice. (PS, 23-4, 25)
One statement that Catherine found central to Jesus’ life and mission is in the gospel of Matthew, where Jesus says to all those who follow him, to the downtrodden and to the disciples:
Come to me, all you who toil and are burdened, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly of heart, and you will find rest for your souls. My yoke is easy and my burden light. (Matt. 11:28-30)