For the Jewish people, the number twelve was much more than a dozen. This sacred number brought to mind the twelve tribes of Israel which descended from the patriarch Jacob’s twelve sons. These twelve tribes were the foundation stones upon which the nation of Israel had been built. Jesus drew upon this traditional symbolism.
Month: November 2019
It was supposed to be a simple dinner. It was supposed to be quick, easy, and nothing about which I had to fret my little head . . . which is full up with fret these days because, as usual, I’ve taken on too much work. Supposed to be, supposed to be, supposed to be.
Actually, in one way, it was simple. It was simply a disaster.
While the death and Resurrection are the most crucial chapters in the story of Jesus, he did a lot more with his life than offer it up on the Cross. In fact, we won’t fully appreciate the significance of his death on Good Friday until we understand the mission that Jesus had for his life in the years that went before.
As modernism sees it, the human body is nothing more than matter, to be molded, manipulated, and used. Devoid of divine purpose or meaning, it’s left for each of us, as individuals, to decide what we want to do with our body. We can ignore it and neglect it, or we can indulge its every appetite. We can nip it and tuck it, remaking it into whatever shape we desire, or we can cut it, starve it, and put it to rest when age, pain, or disease become too much to bear. We can give it away, again and again, to anyone we fancy in whatever ways we fancy, and we can do what we like with any new life that comes of that giving.
Right now, a good many minds are at work fleshing out the theology of the body’s theological and philosophical subtleties: how it builds on Karol Wojtyla’s earlier scholarship, how it responds to Scheler, how Garrigou-Lagrange’s influence runs through it. That’s good. Those discussions are important and necessary. We need them to more fully understand the complex and dense lessons contained within John Paul II’s catechesis.
What a blessing, what a privilege, to think of the Eucharist as it is celebrated around the world, and to experience participation in the sacrament. One Mass for the vast diversity of humanity. There is this unity of the body of Christ, no matter where in the world we find ourselves, that we can enter into the mystery of the Mass and be one with all Christians of all times and places, and really participate in the communion of the saints.
Dr. James Merrick has served as a professor at universities and seminaries on both coasts of the U.S. Before entering the Catholic Church, he was for a decade an Anglican priest in both the U.S. and the U.K. Currently, he is a Lecturer at Franciscan University of Steubenville, Instructor for the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown’s Diaconate …
One of the reasons it took me so long to discern my vocation was that I was constantly looking for absolute certainty about whether or not I was called. I was told to consider whether I was “called” but I wasn’t sure what that “calling” looked or felt like. I was told to seek out the deepest desires of my heart—that my true vocation would satisfy me in a way that the other options would not. But I wasn’t sure how to identify the deepest desires of my heart.