I had an AH-HA moment today. I was attending the annual Faith Formation Day for the Diocese of Orlando. The gospel that we reflected on was “I am the Vine, you are the branches.” Like most people I have heard or read that particular many times. I have always visualized the Vine as a sprawling with fine, fragile branches that extend a far distance. Although as I imagine it, I am a branch that is healthy and firmly rooted in the Vine I am a distance from the Vine. Today as the guided reflection proceeded I got a new image of hearty, strong, well established vine, gnarled and the thickness of a medium sized tree. With that image I now visualize the branch as being firmly and closely conected to the vine…the branch actually coming right out of the vine. The parts to be pruned were given names…guilt, greed, anger…that private thing that only we know. We then give the Vine keeper permission to take those dead parts, cut them away and throw them into the fire. It is nice to get new perspectives on old stories. This is one of the joys of our Catholic faith, familiarity of scripture but still the opportunity to learn something new about it and ourselves. God’s word is tuly alive.

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