Columbus Day in the Summer

We annually celebrate Columbus Day in October. Perhaps this year a summer commemoration would be more suitable. Today marks the 525th anniversary of Christopher Columbus sailing to the New World with the now-famous ships, Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria. 

Columbus' energy, vision, and courage have won him tremendous acclaim in the annals of world history. Few—if any—of us will ever land such legendary respect. However, the greatness of Columbus' accomplishment is not necessarily within his personality; rather, it rests in what he discovered: a place of seemingly endless possibilities that has become a continent of peace and prosperity for millions. 

While we disciples may not have the sizeable horizons of North America before us, we do have vast experiences of grace within and around us that need to be named and claimed. Insofar as these are moments of discovery, we stand to enjoy a renewed sense of wonder at the amazing works of God in our lives.

These weeks of summer, frequented by vacation fun, can be restorative and recreate our spirits. We place ourselves before the beauty of a lake, ocean, or mountain expanse, slow down to drink in a sunrise or sunset, rejoice in the laughter of our family, reminisce about vacations past, and create new memories to be savored for years. Some of us will enjoy a spiritual retreat to embrace a sacred silence that allows us to trace the action of the Spirit throughout our lives. 

To discover the grace of God in our personal histories makes history. It happens not by way of three ships, but by three persons who love and hold us. Our voyage with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit launches us anew daily. To quote St. Francis de Sales: "The road to heaven is not so hard to find as the world would have you think." Whether we travel by land or sea, we move forward by grace. May our discovery of this eternal gift bring us a joy and peace that land us on the solid ground of God's infinite love.