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Sirach 24:1-4, 8-12; Ephesians 1:3-6, 15-18; John 1:1-18

"Just to be is a blessing; just to live is holy."  

These words of Abraham Heschel may seem to some an exaggeration. Yet today's readings echo this truth and present a crucial perspective for entering this new year. 

John's Gospel states most simply and starkly: "All things came to be through him and without him nothing came to be."

Paul applies this truth to human dignity : "God chose us in him before the foundation of the world to be holy and without blemish before him."

The ancient Christian Nicene creed (325) affirms the identical  truth: "We believe in God the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth."

St. Ignatius of Loyola introduces his month-long reflection on Christian life simply: "Human beings are created to praise, reverence and serve God our Lord and by means of this to save their souls. The other things on the face of the earth are created for the  human beings to help them in the pursuit of the end for which they were created."

But it must be acknowledged that these basic Christian beliefs contrast starkly with the secular view of reality common in our culture. The secular mindset — though it may acknowledge the existence of God — sees God and religion as peripheral to human existence and ignores the religious perspective in daily living.

Do our New Year's resolutions include the desire to live more fully our religious convictions in 2014?

Remember:  "Just to be is a blessing; just to live is holy."  

 

By Dick Hauser

Pope Francis Twitter Feed

* Our Way of Life *

 

"Our diverse talents and abilities, our differences in culture, nationality and age are assets for the richness of the community. Although we may be engaged in a variety of ministries, we all share the common call to apostolic discipleship in a community of the Catholic Apostolate of St. Vincent Pallotti."(OWL, 91)

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"Christ, the Apostle of the Eternal Father, and his mission are central to our personal and community life, giving meaning and direction to our thinking, our spirituality, our prayer, action and suffering." (OWL, 19)

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"As a community of disciples we are gathered around Jesus, the Apostle of the Eternal Father. Like the first disciples, we want to be with Jesus, be sent out by him and return to him to evaluate our service in the light of his presence." (OWL, 88)

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"As Pallottines, it is our special charism to foster growth in faith and love among the laity, to awaken them to awareness of their apostolic call, and to cooperate with them in furthering the apostolic mission." (OWL, 21)

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"Our relationships with one another should be marked by a love that bears all, believes all and hopes for all, a love that is neither conceited nor jealous, which hurts no one, nor is embittered or resentful. It is never discouraged but remains patient and kind. It rejoices with others and shares their suffering. It is with this kind of love that we should help and support one another." (OWL, 90)