Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The memorial of Robert Bellarmine

One of my new favorite bloggers is a Catholic musician and writer by the name of Mark Mallett.  His reflections, grounded in sacred scripture, sacred tradition, and the magisterium, connect the current trends in the world with the prophetic voice of the Church.  He, along with several other writers, are becoming essential "go to" sites for my own reflections on world events.

I appreciate both a realistic look at the signs of our times as well as a hopeful voice reminding the reader of God's plan for our good and the good of the world.  So, dear friends, I heartily recommend Mallett's blog to you.  Read on and enjoy.

Seeing Dimly

for September 17th, 2014
Opt. Memorial of Saint Robert Bellarmine
Liturgical texts here

THE Catholic Church is an incredible gift to God’s people. For it is true, and it always has been, that we can turn to her not only for the sweetness of the Sacraments but also to draw upon the infallible Revelation of Jesus Christ that sets us free.
Still, we see dimly.
What we understand now of the “things of God” is comparable to what a newborn infant understands of quantum physics. “At present we see indistinctly, as in a mirror,” says Paul, “but then face to face.” As Jesus said to St. Faustina:
Who God is in His Essence, no one will fathom, neither the mind of Angels nor of man… Get to know God by contemplating His attributes. Divine Mercy in My Soul, Diary, 30
Those attributes, says Paul, can be summed up in one word: love.
Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, love is not pompous, it is not inflated, it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (First reading)
The more we become like love the more we will become like God, and the more we will enter into His mystery. I do not think the same can be said of truth—that the more truth we know, the more we will become like He who said He was “the truth.” In fact, St. Paul warns:
If I… comprehend all mysteries and all knowledge… but do not have love, I am nothing.
Thus, we need to be careful that, while defending Catholicism, we do not fall into a sort of triumphalism whereby we use the gift of the Church like a bludgeon. For love must be her most distinguishing characteristic. 
This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another. (John 13:35)
Love, namely, love of Christ, is the reason that there can even be such a thing as ecumenism.1 But love can no more exist without truth than a fish can exist without the ocean. Hence, even love “rejoices with the truth.” For truth is what leads us along the way to life in God. And “the way” Jesus showed us to reach “the life” is through the Catholic Church, the repository of truth. There is no other way left us by Christ. And if you say to me, “Wait, Jesus said that He was the way, not the Church,” then I ask you, “Who is the Church but the body of Christ“?
In today’s Gospel, Jesus says, “wisdom is vindicated by all her children.” In the era of peace to come,2 there will be one flock, one shepherd, one witness to the Christian faith that will reach to the ends of the earth before that final conflagration that will usher in a New Heavens and a New Earth. All peoples will see that Christ did not establish a Church of divisions, but unity—a unity of love and truth.
And that which is not built on this rock will crumble.
“And they shall hear my voice, and there shall be one fold and one shepherd.” May God… shortly bring to fulfillment His prophecy for transforming this consoling vision of the future into a present reality… It is God’s task to bring about this happy hour and to make it known to all… When it does arrive, it will turn out to be a solemn hour, one big with consequences not only for the restoration of the Kingdom of Christ, but for the pacification of… the world. We pray most fervently, and ask others likewise to pray for this much-desired pacification of society. —POPE PIUS XI, Ubi Arcani dei Consilioi “On the Peace of Christ in his Kingdom”, December 23, 1922

No comments:

Post a Comment