Wednesday, February 6, 2008

LENT: The Journey continues

Memento homo, quia pulvis es, et in pulverem reverteris. =
Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return.

In a funeral discourse on his brother's death, St. Ambrose said:

"Death was not part of nature; it became part of nature. God did not decree death from the beginning; he prescribed it as a remedy. Human life, because of sin . . . began to experience the burden of wretchedness in unremitting labor and unbearable sorrow. There had to be a limit to its evils; death had to restore what life had forfeited. Without the assistance of grace, immortality is more of a burden than a blessing." Earlier in the discourse he said: "Death is, then, no cause for mourning, for it is the cause of mankind's salvation" (Spe Salvi par. 10).

In this way our lives are caught up in the Paschal Mystery, the life, passion, death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. May we today be reminded of who we are and of our common destiny: to be children of God through Christ. This injunction also serves as a reminder of our baptism, or, in the case of catchumens, a looking forward to baptism, in which we die, are buried, and rise to new life, "the life which is simply life, simply 'happiness'" (Spe Salvi par. 11).

If you are still looking for what do for Lent, check out the Ironic Catholic. She has many good suggestions. Personally, I'd be impressed by discalced theology professors in Minnesota in February!

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