12 Our Calling, yours and mine, in the World Today - Noel D'Silva

posted May 23, 2018, 10:14 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated May 23, 2018, 10:14 AM ]
How can we bring anew the Light of the Gospel to a chaotic world, a world that is pushing aside its Creator for the idols of relativism and self-sufficiency generated by the ‘almighty’ power of science and technology? Catch modern man believing in the paradoxical saying of Jesus that he who loses his life shall save it! It is to be hoped that the cognoscenti as well the ‘lay-person on the street’ will take note of the ideas expressed in this essay, and use them as a spur for action to the Mission that all baptised are privileged to be called as disciples of Jesus.

The Catholic World is suffused by the determination of recent Popes to overhaul, so to say, the fundamental obligation of the Church to make Christ present in the world; hence, the call for New Evangelisation. This, of course, does not mean a new Gospel, or a modified one that is made relevant to current situations. No! What it calls for is a new understanding of the Gospel, fortified by prayer, meditation and study, and a new dynamics of Mission that takes into cognisance the ‘signs of the times’.

The example of the self-emptying of Jesus must be evidenced by a detachment from the “structures of power”, simultaneously accompanied by a total thrust and full engrossment into humanity in situ. “The joys and the hopes, the griefs and the anxieties of the peoples of this age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted, these too are the joys and hopes, the griefs and anxieties of the followers of Christ.” (Vatican II – Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World: Gaudium et Spes) Priests are said to be alter Christi in a special way. Is it not, therefore, incumbent on them to lead by example? Faith cannot remain in the realm of knowledge. It demands translation into action. As a matter of fact, ‘Faith’ should be considered as more of a verb than a noun. Faith is active, “a mode of being in a relation with God and others” accompanied by belief, commitment, love, risk. Faith is loving God, considered together with loving one's neighbour as the badge of those who believe in the Gospel. It is, therefore, just not enough to preach the Faith. The preachers MUST get into contact with, be in touch with the world of man (joys and sorrows) and Nature to evidence the transforming power of Faith. Get the smell of the sheep – repeated time and time again, but…

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