There is a story of St. Thomas Aquinas that good Father J. related in his sermon yesterday (a year ago). It seems that our St. Thomas was often so rapt in contemplation of higher things that he seemed unfocused on the world around him. In an effort to shake him out of his reverie one time, his fellow monks, laughing and smirking amongst themselves, cried, “Look! Out the window! There is a flying cow!” Well, St. Thomas startled, got up from his chair and went to the window to look -- which made the tricksters all burst into laughter. But, St. Thomas stopped that mid-chuckle when he instantly replied, “I would rather believe in a flying cow than a lying monk!”
Epistle in yesterday's Mass, the day before the feast of St. Thomas, St. Paul laid our spritiual priorities out very clearly: And now there remain faith, hope, and charity, these three: but the greatest of these is charity.
The way Father explained this made so much sense I wanted to share it. He said that, in heaven, we no longer require faith because we see God, face to face; all that we have believed in our lifetime is right there for us to see ourselves; we no longer need hope because that hope for heaven has been achieved; but the charity we have practiced during our lifetime remains there in our souls. We take it to heaven with us.