Thursday, January 10, 2013

Pope: the Incarnation means that faith must involve our whole life

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The mystery of the Incarnation, "the truth that we express with Christmas", indicates that God, in order to open the road to full communion with him "does not limit himself to words", but freely "gave himself : "is the mystery to ponder" to let the Lord enlighten us and transform us more and more to the image of his Son made man for us. "

Once again the "great mystery" of the "eternal and infinite God who is immersed in the finite human to bring man to him" was the focus of in catechesis Benedict XVI's general audience in catechesis, with the emphasis on the "generosity" and love expressed in self-giving.


Sometimes, the Pope observed, faced with magnitude of the event we are more attentive to the external aspects of the festivity, the "colours" of the feast, than "what is at the heart of the great novelty that Christians celebrate, something absolutely unthinkable, that only God could operate and we can only enter with faith. The Logos which is with God, the Logos who is God (cf. Jn 1:1), through which they were created all things were created (cf. 1.3), which accompanied mankind with his light throughout history (cf. 1 0.4 to 5, 1.9), became flesh and made his dwelling place among us, became one of us". " The Son of God ... worked with human hands, He thought with a human mind, acted by human choice and loved with a human heart".

"It is important therefore, that we recover our wonder before this mystery, allow ourselves to be enveloped by the magnitude of this event: God walked our streets as man, he entered into the time of man, to communicate His life to us. And He did this not with the splendour of a sovereign, who subjugates the world with his power, but with the humility of a child ".

At Christmas, the Pope noted, we usually exchange gifts with the people closest to us. "Sometimes it may be an act done out of convention, but it generally expresses affection; it is a sign of love and esteem. In the prayer over the gifts at Christmas Mass we prayed: "Accept, O Lord, our offering in this night of light, and for this mysterious exchange of gifts transform us in Christ, your Son, who raised man next to you in glory". The idea of giving is at the heart of the liturgy and brings to our consciousness the original gift of Christmas: on that Holy night God, becoming flesh, wanted to become a gift for men, He gave a little of himself to us, took on our humanity to gift us His divinity. This is the great gift. Even in our giving is not important whether a gift is expensive or not; those who cannot afford to give a little of themselves, always give too little, indeed, sometimes they try to replace the heart and the meaning of giving with money or material things. The mystery of the Incarnation shows us that God did not do this: He did not give something; He gave himself in His only-begotten Son. Here we find the model for our giving, so that our relationships, especially the most important ones, are driven by generosity and love".


"The fact of the Incarnation, of God becoming a man like us, shows us the unprecedented realism of Divine love. The action of God, in fact, is not limited to words, indeed we might say that he is not content to speak, but is immersed in our history and takes on fatigue and weight of human life ". 

"This mode of action of God is a powerful stimulus to question the realism of our faith, which should not be limited to the sphere of feelings and emotions, but must enter into concrete existence, that is to touch our lives every day and direct them in a practical way. God did not stop at words, but He showed us how to live, sharing our own experience, except sin".

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