Sunday, January 07, 2007

Striding with Confidence

Con-fide/With Faith

Pope Benedict asks, "How is it possible for a man to use his eyes in such a way that he perceives and respects the dignity of the other person and guarantees his own dignity? The drama of our times consists precisely in our capacity to look at ourselves like this -- and that is why we find it threatening to look at the other and must protect ourselves against this ... A child can open himself confidently to love if he knows he is loved, and he can develop and grow if he knows that he is followed everywhere by his parents' look of love" [Christianity and The Crisis of Cultures, 70-71].

When we forget what the Holy Father says, we are consigned to ontological sickness. Our relation to our earthly mother and father will not avail, being abbreviated, imperfect, unsatisfying. But, as the Psalmist knows in Psalm 139, if we walk in the sight of the LORD, who does not wish to find us perishing or lacking in any good, then "all manner of things shall be most well," as Julian of Norwich observed.

If we do our best, stay connected in the Sacraments, pray constantly for ourselves and every single person we meet in "I-Thou" (M. Buber) interactions, our precious time will not be wasted. Indeed, how better can our time be "spent"?


Athos said...

At Vigil Mass yesterday evening, I experienced a sense of solidarity during the Passing of the Peace that comes over me once in a long while. Usually, in such a large parish, the people around one are different, anonymous each time. But as we turn to bless one another, we share a handshake, a smile, a twinkle of the eye in recognition of our mutual at-one-ness because of He Who lies humbly on the Altar before us.

I do not tire of the Passing of the Peace.

David Nybakke said...

Sign of peace
*Lord Jesus Christ, you said to your apostles: I leave you peace, my peace I give you. Look not on our sins, but on the faith of your Church, and grant us the peace and unity of your kingdom where you live for ever and ever.


The peace of the Lord be with you always.
And also with you.

(Then the deacon [or priest] may add:)
Let us offer each other the sign of peace.

At the sharing of the peace at our Franciscan parish the choir usually goes into a lovely chant because we tend to stretch this segment of the Mass out to allow everyone a chance to shake as many hands (or give out or receive as many hugs) as one can.

For me this sign of peace has been critical for my conversion and love of the Church. ..."Look not on our sins, but on the faith of your Church,..." I have and continue to meditate on "the faith of your Church" for hours on in.

In our Cursillo community, this segment of the Mass, is a great moment for unity and validation of us all into the body of Christ.