From the Prefect’s Desk
We as followers of Christ, are all called to share in His suffering and Passion. Each one of us have our own cross to carry but there are times when we question whether or not we deserve what we carry. In our own humanity we tend to forget that our crosses are made to fit our own and that they are meant for us as Our Blessed Lord’s cross was meant for him alone. Maybe it is time to remind ourselves that Christ promised us Salvation, but he never promised us that our salvation will be easy. We all need to work for it.
Christ’s sacrifice was an example to all of us who call ourselves Christians. Suffering is one of those things that remind us always that all men are equal. The young and the old suffer. The rich and the poor are visited by it. The great and the humble are not spared by it. The great can rationalize over it but the humble know how to bear it. Indeed no human being is stranger to suffering.
Some people are afflicted with bodily suffering. Others are suffering in their hearts. Still others suffer in their minds. Suffering is one experience that shouts how human, how vulnerable and mortal we are, and how much we need others. It marks our humanity and makes people ever so lovable.
Down to brass tacks, suffering is a very demanding but generous customer. When it comes, it does not leave us alone. It claims our attention and taxes our very person. But if all the time it was there, we were patient, attentive and generous, it would purify us and make us better persons, better followers of Christ. Any person who knows how to accept suffering as it is, a test of will and faith, emerges purified, even-tempered, and a thousand times more compassionate.
It is sad that in spite of all the advances of medicine and technology, pain and suffering remains a part of the human vocabulary. What is worse though is the illusion that our world must become painless.
If we are willing to embrace life for what God has intended it to be, we should be willing to welcome suffering, too, for life without it isn’t life at all. Suffering is very much a part of our lives. And God has not taken it away in order that we may never forget Him and the Kingdom that he promised us. In fact, the greatest illusion a man can ever have is to believe that in this life he can be perfectly happy.
Life on earth is but the beginning of life, and suffering is but a passage towards the fullness of life, which will come only when we are delivered of this life where we are limited by our own humanity and imprisoned by our own inequities. Even as we live, we are being delivered unto life. Just as there is suffering when a woman gives birth to a child, so there will be pain even as this earth delivers us unto true Life. Our suffering is part of our deliverance. As our Blessed Lord delivered himself to the embrace of the Cross, his unconditional acceptance of the Father’s will delivered us our salvation.
“It is not by sidestepping or fleeing from suffering that we are healed, but rather by our capacity for accepting it, maturing through it and finding meaning through union with Christ, who suffered with infinite love.” – Pope Benedict XVI, Spe Salvi (Nov. 30, 2007)
Laudetur Jesus Christus!
Sincerely yours in Christ,