From: Mary Zimmerman
Pope Benedict XVI declared a year of faith starting October 11, and ending November 24. The Pope said, ďThe church as a whole and all her pastors, like Christ, must set out to lead people toward friendship with the Son of God.Ē The door of faith is always open for us that sets us out on a journey that lasts a lifetime, beginning with baptism. Baptism takes away original sin that all babies are born with, it gives them a jump start on their journey of faith with many graces along the way, since baptism is a sacrament.
Then each of us should have an ardent desire to more closely connect with the almighty merciful God that made us to love and serve Him and our neighbor as ourselves. Pope Benedict XVI said, ďOnly once we are firmly grounded in our own faith, can we participate in the new evangelization, bringing others to the fullness of truth in Christ.Ē So letís open up the chambers of our hearts, let Jesusí most Sacred Heart beat in union with ours. He is our heavenly Father and we are all His children, young or old, black or white, rich or poor, and He loves us with a Divine love which can only come from the heart of God.
Human love is quite frail at times as sin and temptation enter in and we sometimes fall, but we pick ourselves up (confession) and try again. Trying hard to do the best we can, God accepts us with open arms, that is always our hope. I believe I have just described faith. I believe faith leads to trust. (Godís message to St. Faustina, the graces of my mercy are drawn by means of one vessel only, and that is...trust.) Accomplishing that, we are surely on the path that leads to God. But still with the many graces God has given me, daily Mass, etc., I still fail and fall miserably. God just picks me up, dusts me off, and says okay, Mary, try again. Thatís the Divine love and mercy I was just talking about.
I believe for every different denomination (church) our connection to God takes on many different ways, yet our goal is the same, to give all praise, honor, and glory to God. We as Catholics do this in many ways. For now Iíll just touch on the Mass and most especially the Eucharist, Holy Communion, the body and blood of Jesus. Yes, perhaps for some that is a hard saying. In Jesusí day some walked away as well, but letís put that in the context of other miracles Jesus has performed, letís start with you and me.
Along with the parentsí cooperation, God has the pattern and capability to form a child as well as animals, birds, and all creation, all vegetation, the seeds that develop and produce our food, the sky and all its splendor, the rain and snow. God sets this all in motion. He made heaven as well, itís our surprise award for following His rules on earth. Oh, letís mention how Jesus worked the miracle of raising the dead to life. With all this said, donít you think He could give His priests (His first Apostles), the power to change bread and wine into His body and blood as He performed this miracle on Holy Thursday at the Last Supper (the first Mass) then gave His Apostles the grace to carry on this work.
Just take a time out to meditate on Godís goodness and mercy and He will grant you the gift of faith. If we desire it, then we dare not boast, but share our faith. God delights when another soul has come to know, love, and trust, then serve Him. Those are the ingredients God uses to shower graces upon a soul. I wish all you readers a faith-filled year. I pray for you. Pray for me and my dear family as well.