Congratulations to all of our fathers on this Father’s Day weekend! Thank you for witnessing to the unconditional love of our Father in heaven. Today we give thanks for all our fathers – living and deceased. May we honor them always with a spirit of profound respect.
It is interesting that in the Creed “God the Father almighty” is described as “creator of heaven and earth.” The fatherhood of God could have been qualified in many ways: strength, authority, mercy, etc. But the Father’s role as “Creator” is singled out among all the other attributes we might have attached to him. What does this tell us?
First, it speaks of the Father’s gratuitous goodness. After all, God does not need to create. He is infinitely sufficient in the communion of the Trinity. But the Father freely chooses to create “all things visible and invisible.” The fact that something exists, rather than nothing does not flow from necessity. It is pure gift. Science may be able to tell us how the universe and the earth evolved, but it cannot answer the question “Why?” To acknowledge God as “creator of heaven and earth,” is to affirm his infinite goodness and express our wonder at the cosmos.
Moreover, although there may be other forms of intelligent life in the universe, as far as we know we humans are the only creatures who can express thanks and praise for creation. In this sense, one can say that God created the entire universe for us! Like a loving father, who wants to give his children the very best, God gives to us the earth and everything in it. In a marvelous way, working with nature, our every need is provided for. So we also see that our Father in heaven providentially cares for us; giving us our daily bread.
All authentic fatherhood exemplifies these aspects of God’s divine fatherhood. Fathers are meant to reflect the creative goodness of God, who gives us life and then cares for and nurtures us, providing for our needs. Like our Father in heaven, fathers seek the best for their children out of genuine love and concern. Perhaps this Father’s Day can be an opportunity to reflect for ourselves on the fatherhood of God in light of our own experience of being a father, or knowing a father’s love. Jesus called God, “Abba,” an affectionate term for “Father” – may each of us experience more deeply this same intimate relationship (Cf. Galatians 4:6.)