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The Virtues of Humility and Love.

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                                          KNOWING AND DEEPENING OUR CATHOLIC FAITH

To deepen our faith let us learn more from the teaching of the church contained in the catechism of the Catholic Church  (CCC), on the virtues of humility and love.

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  1. Who is invited to come into the kingdom of GOD proclaimed and brought about JESUS?

(541-546,567)

All are invited by JESUS to enter the kingdom of GOD. Even the worst of sinners is called to convert and to accept the boundless mercy of the Father. Already here on earth, the kingdom belongs to those who accept it with a humble heart. To them the mysteries of the kingdom are revealed.

THE PROCLAMATION OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD

Everyone is called to enter the kingdom. First announced to the children of Israel, the messianic kingdom is intended to accept men of all nations. To enter it, one must first accept JESUS’ word:

The word of the Lord is compared to a seed which a sown in a field; those who hear it with faith, and are numbered among the little flock of Christ have truly receive the kingdom. Then, by its own power, the seed sprouts and grows until the harvest.” (CCC 543)

The kingdom belongs to the poor and lowly, which means those who have accepted it with humble heart. JESUS is sent to “preach good news to the poor”; he declares them blessed, for “theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “ To them – the “little ones”- the Father is pleased to reveal what remains hidden from the wise and the learned. Jesus shares the life of the poor, from the cradle to the cross; he experiences hunger, thirst and privation. Jesus identifies himself with the poor of every kind and makes active love towards them the condition for entering the kingdom. (CCC 544)

Jesus invites sinners to the table of the kingdom: “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.” He invites them to that conversion without which one cannot enter the kingdom, but shows and deed his Father’s boundless mercy for them and the vast “joy in heaven over one sinner who repents.” The supreme proof of his love will be the sacrifice of his own life “for the forgiveness of sins.”(CCC 545)

JESUS’ invitation to enter his kingdom comes in the form of parables, a characteristic feature of his teaching. Through his parables he invites people to the feast of the kingdom, but he also ask for radical choice: to gain the kingdom, one must give everything. Words are not enough, deeds are required. The parables are like mirrors of man: will he be hard soil or good earth for the word? What use has he made of the talents he has received? Jesus and the presence of the kingdom in this world are secretly at the heart of the parables. One must enter the kingdom, that is, become a disciple of Christ, in order to “know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven.” For those who stay “outside,” everything remains enigmatic. (CCC 546)

  1. “The whole of Christ’s life was a continual teaching: his silences, his miracles, his gestures, his prayer, his love for people, his special affection for the little and the poor, his acceptance of the total sacrifice on the cross for the redemption of the world, and his Resurrection are the actualization of his word and the fulfillment of Revelation” (John Paul ii, CT9).
  2. Christ’s disciples are to conform themselves to him until he is formed in them (cf. Gal 4:19). “for this reason we, who have been made like to him, who have died with him, are taken up into the mysteries of his life, until we reign together with him” (LG 7 & 4).
  3. No one, whether shepherd or wise man, can approach GOD here below except by kneeling before the manger at Bethlehem and adoring him hidden in the weakness of a newborn child.
  4. His obedience to Mary and Joseph, as well as by his humble work during the long years in Nazareth, Jesus gives us example of his holiness in the daily life of family and work.
  5. From the beginning of his public life, at baptism, Jesus is the “Servant,” wholly consecrated to the redemptive work that he will accomplish by the “baptism” of his passion.
  1. The kingdom of heaven was inaugurated on earth by Christ. “This kingdom shone out before men in the word, in the work and in the person of Christ.
  1. The temptation in the desert shows Jesus, the humble messiah, who triumphs over Satan by his total adherence to the plan of salvation willed by the Father.

 

LETS US PRAY

God of power and mercy, by whose grace your people gives worthy service: save us from faltering on our way to joys you have promised. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

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