για Ελληνικά πατήστε εδώ
Informative bulletin of the Paphos Latin Parish
The fullness of life
The awareness of the fullness of life into which Christ the Saviour introduces us propels us onward in the mission of announcing to all the joy and light of the Gospel
In this work, we must also be prepared to establish a sincere and constructive dialogue with believers of other religions, confident that God can lead “all men of good will in whose hearts grace works in an unseen way” towards salvation in Christ.
While dedicating herself with all of her efforts to evangelization, the Church continues to invoke the definitive coming of the Saviour, since it is “in hope that we are saved” (Rom 8:24).
The salvation of men and women will be complete only when, after having conquered the last enemy, death (1 Cor. 15:26), we will participate fully in the glory of the risen Jesus, who will bring to fullness our relationship with God, with our brothers and sisters, and with all of creation.
Total salvation, of the body and of the soul, is the final destiny to which God calls all of humanity.
Founded in faith, sustained by hope, and working in charity, with the example of Mary, Mother of the Saviour and first among the saved, we are certain that “our citizenship” is in heaven, and from it we also await a savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
He will change our lowly body to conform with his glorified body by the power that enables Him also to bring all things into subjection to Himself” (Phil 3:20-21).
(Letter of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith “Placuit Deo” (=It pleases God), March 2018, §15)
Through the cross joy has come into the world
Now that we have seen the resurrection of Christ, let us adore the all-holy Lord Jesus, the only sinless One.
We bow in worship before your cross, O Christ, and we praise and glorify your resurrection, for you are our God, and we have no other, and we magnify your name. all the faithful, come: let us adore the holy resurrection of Christ, for, behold through the cross joy has come into the world!
Let us always bless the Lord, let us sing his resurrection, for by enduring for us the pain of the cross, He has crushed death by his death.
(From the Office of the Resurrection, of the Greek Church)
Our profound attachment
In our globalized world of the 21st c. we can trace the past influences that have shaped our societies and which continue to cast their light and shadow onto the present day.
The Modernism at the beginning of the 20th c. which rejected all traditional forms of thought, art and piety was followed by Realism and Abstraction in art and extreme subjectivism. The industrialized era opened up the way to the Internet avenues and contemporary man may be aware of events as they happen to any remote part of the planet.
Sociologists and psychologist are happy to draft new theories and finances have become a major factor in formulating our future.
What is, then, missing from our modern world?
Modern man is discouraged to admit the transcendent values without which all human life is incomplete and unfulfilled.
However, as ideologies come and go, we are able to discern a solid rock of stability and consistency.
The presence of the Church in the world is that rock: the timeless message of God’s love as it has been incarnated in Jesus Christ constantly supports and challenges us. Our faith is not based on a passing ideology, but is centered on a Person: the person of the Risen Christ!
So, our profound attachment to the Lord and our unshaken faith in His Resurrection give us reason to push on forward with courage, joy and optimism and to shape our future world in spirit and in truth.
The timeless appeal of Christian poetry
Helen Steiner Rice (1900 –1981) was an American writer of religious and inspirational poetry.
Her father, a railroad worker was of German origin and her mother Anna Bieri came from Switzerland.
She began work for a public utility and progressed to the position of advertising manager, which was rare for a woman at that time. She also became the Ohio State Chairman of the Women’s Public Information Committee of the Electric Light Association, and campaigned for women’s rights and improved working conditions.
In 1929 she married Franklin Dryden Rice, a bank vice-president in Dayton, Ohio. After the stock market crash in October that year, Franklin lost his job and his investments. He fell into a depression from which he never recovered, and committed suicide in 1932.
Over time Rice became a successful businesswoman and lecturer, but found her most satisfying outlet in writing verse for the greeting card company Gibson Greetings.
The demand for her poems became so great that her books are still selling steadily after many printings, and she has been acclaimed as “America’s beloved inspirational poet laureate”.
Her strong religious faith and the ability she had to express deep emotion gave her poems timeless appeal.
She died on April 23, 1981. Pope Saint John Paul II, was an admirer of her artistry
Did you know…
The word poet and poem are of Greek origin from the verb ποιώ, root ποι– which means to create, esp. objects of art, to make, to do.
In the Nicaean Creed which was originally written in Greek at the First Ecumenical Council of 325 A.D. we say: “I believe in one God, Father, Almighty, Ποιητή (poieté) of heaven and earth…” etc.
This word ποιητής (= poet) was preferred to others with a synonymous meaning, (e.g. Δημιουργός / creator) most likely because the word “Poet” implies beauty, order and harmony, which are inherent in God’s works.
The Psalms say of the world:
“The world is ποίημα (=poem, that is “work”) of Your hands” (Psalm 8, 3) et al.
Man, being in the image of God, works modelled on his Creator, and man’s poetic endeavours offer a glimpse to the transcendent beyond…
You, little pebble
Jesus has risen from the dead. And this is not a fantasy. This is beautiful. It is the mystery of the thrown-away stone, which ends up being the cornerstone of our existence. Christ has risen from the dead.
In this throwaway culture, where that which is not useful takes the path of the use-and-throw, where that which is not useful is discarded, that stone that was discarded is the fountain of life. And even “us, little pebbles,” who’ve been thrown in an earth full of suffering and, tragedy, with faith in the risen Christ, have a reason for being, amidst so much calamity. A sense to look beyond: There is not a wall, but a horizon. There’s life, joy, in there is the cross with this ambivalence.
The Church, facing distrust and closed and fearful hearts, continues to say, “Calm down, the Lord has risen.”
You, little pebble, have a reason in life. Because you’re a pebble holding on to the cornerstone, that stone that evilness of sin has discarded. What does the Church say amidst so much tragedy? From within the heart the Church says “Jesus is risen!”
Think about the every-day problems of life, illnesses, wars, human tragedies and say with a humble voice, alone, to God who’s in front of us: “I don’t know how this is going, but I’m sure that Christ has risen.’”
Pope Francis, Rome, Easter 2016
God’s Promises Prevail
In this uncertain world of trouble
with its sorrow, sin and strife,
Man needs a haven for his heart
to endure the storms of life.
He keeps hoping for a promise
of better, bigger things
With the power and the prestige
that fame and fortune bring.
The world is rife with promises
that are fast and falsely spoken,
For man in his deceptive way
knows his promise can be broken.
But when God makes a promise,
it remains forever true,
For everything God promises
He unalterably will do.
So read the promises of God
that will never fail or falter
And inherit everlasting life,
which even death can’t alter.
And when you’re disillusioned
and every hope is blighted,
Recall the promises of God
and your faith will be relighted
Knowing there’s one lasting promise on which man can depend—
The promise of salvation
and a life that has no end.
Helen Steiner Rice (1900-1981)
“Before the many barriers of injustice, of loneliness, of distrust and of suspicion which are still being elaborated in our day, the world of labour is called upon to take courageous steps in order that ‘being and working together’ is not merely a slogan but a programme for the present and the future. Only through a firm resolve shared by all economic actors may we hope to give a new direction to the destiny of our world. So too artificial intelligence, robotics and other technological innovations must be so employed that they contribute to the service of humanity and to the protection of our common home, rather than to the contrary, as some assessments unfortunately foresee.
We cannot remain silent in the face of the suffering of millions of people whose dignity is wounded, nor can we continue to move forward as if the spread of poverty and injustice had no cause. It is a moral imperative, a responsibility that involves everyone, to create the right conditions to allow each person to live in a dignified manner. By rejecting a “throwaway” culture and a mentality of indifference, the entrepreneurial world has enormous potential to effect substantial change by increasing the quality of productivity, creating new jobs, respecting labour laws, fighting against public and private corruption and promoting social justice, together with the fair and equitable sharing of profits
(Message of the Holy Father at the World Economic Forum at Davos, Jan. 2018)
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