The Christ

Christmas

There is no glory except in humiliation.
There is no God except Him who became flesh.
There is no holiness except through sin.
There is no riches except poverty.
There is no light but the light in the dark.
There is no home but the homeless King.
There is no life but through death.
And all this by the initiative of God, with the lowly maiden’s assent.

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God bless you

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Does God love everyone equally?

God doesn’t love us equally. It’s better than that. God loves us all incomparably. Not more, not less, and not equally.

God’s love is always infinite. But we can’t say that infinity equals infinity. God’s love for you is incomprehensible, even in terms of His love for me.

Does a larger circle have more lines of symmetry? Are there more square numbers than prime numbers? Are there more possible shapes than possible songs? What is zero divided by zero? What is infinity divided by infinity? There comes a point (but it’s really more a lack of a point) where things are beyond comparison, even to each other, and even to themselves. I believe God’s love is one of these things.

I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

Ephesians 3:18-19

God bless you

March 16th

The date’s been set: March 16th. It’s very exciting and frightening.
On this day, I will be baptised into the body of Christ, and receive confirmation, and my first communion. It will be the biggest day of my life so far.
It’s funny to think about afterwards. Everything will be the same, and yet everything will be different. I feel like I should get a uniform or a badge or something, to show my identity as a Catholic, a redeemed child of God, a member of the one, holy, Catholic and apostolic Church. But their won’t be any.
After my baptism, I will be a new creation in Christ, and if I am transformed so, then all creation will be transformed to me also. Being born again, I will be new to the world, and the world will be new to me. I imagine it will be like a light is switched on, and all is bright.
In confirmation, I will be sealed with the Holy Spirit, and I have no idea what this will be like. It’s extremely exciting. God’s Spirit will live in me.
And then I will have my first communion. This is the bit that’s blowing my mind. When I’ve been thinking about my baptism, and how I plan to celebrate its anniversary each year, I think each time, “and I’ll make sure to take communion on the day”, then realise I’ll be taking communion like a real Catholic! I’ll be one of them! Those people who stand up and queue, eat and drink the holiest thing in existence, then come back to sit or kneel, praying to the God they’ve just eaten. I will eat his flesh, and drink his blood, and he will live in me, and I in him. This will be the biggest change, as I will get to eat the medicine of immortality at mass.
I find the Eucharist a bit terrifying. It’s so holy and mysterious. I suspect the apostles were a bit terrified at the last supper too, when Jesus told them to eat his body, and drink his blood.
The 16th of March 2014 will arguably be the turning point of my life history, just as the thirty or so years about 0 AD were the turning point in all of human history. In many ways, everything was the same. But everything was different; the rules had changed forever; the new covenant had begun.

Please pray for me!
God bless you.

Amateur theology on the Eucharist (Part 1)

[Edit: After further reflection, I’ve decided this was incomplete, and so did a Part 2, which I have to linked to here.]

[Before I start, I’d like to emphasise how amateur this is. I have much to learn, and have not yet been baptised into the Church. Wherever I’m mistaken, please correct me to the best of your ability or direct me to correction. And wherever I’m missing something, please show me.
Thanks in advance]

In what sense is something what it is? For example, why is a chair, a chair? What makes it a chair? I think this is (roughly) what philosophers used to call the substance/essence. Does the essence actually exist, or is it just in our minds? Is the essence in an object’s own existence, or only in the mind of the person who recognises or identifies the object?
Here’s a thought experiment: if no people existed in the universe, what would each thing be? If the essence is basically or definitions, then there would be no essence. It would be absurd to say planets, or chairs, or even atoms would still exist, as they would have no definitions. All would still exist, but completely incomprehensible (which is fine as there would be no one to comprehend it).
But, this logic fails for numbers. If there are three holes, regardless of whether it’s recognised or not, those numbers exist. Not physically, and not because I defined those numbers, but just because of the holes, there is three. The existence of the holes implies the real existence of the threeness of those holes. So, objects have non-material properties implied by the form of their existence.

Now to the Eucharist. Jesus tells us it is his body, and his blood (and who am I to interpret this as meaning anything else?). But to all appearances, it is still bread and wine. But, appearances can be deceiving. So, what is the essence of the body and blood?
The best answer I can find, is that the essence of the body, is its life. Life is the essential bodyness of the body, and whatever has my life, is my body. When my body one day loses my life, it will no longer really be my body; it will more be my ex-body, and respected (hopefully) for what it was, and for its potential in the resurrection. I believe the same or similar is true of the essence of our blood.
So, the bread is no longer bread, and the wine no longer wine, but the body and the blood of Jesus of Nazareth, because his life is in them. And his life (body, spirit, soul, divinity) is in them, because it is his body and blood, by his declaration.

‘This is the bread which cometh down from heaven: that if any man eat of it, he may not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, for the life of the world.’
John 6:51-52

‘He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood abideth in me: and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, the same also shall live by me.’
John 6:57-58

God bless you.

P.S.
I’m sharing this in case it can help others understand, as it helped me understand. Pascal said that we are more convinced by the reasons we find on our own than those shown us, and I think he’s right, but another angle may still be of help to others.
Have any proper (respected, orthodox) theologians spoken about the Eucharist this way? I hope so, because I don’t want to suggest my own ideas.
I’d like to repeat my request at the start, that if I’m mistaken anywhere here, in matters great or small, please correct me. I only want orthodoxy (truth).

Thanks again, and may God almighty bless you deeply.