Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Mary, our model of a sinless life
(Luke 1: 26-38)
Is life without sin possible?

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Imagine someone asking you to answer the question: -Is life possible without sin? After the personal experience, the answer would be that a life without sin is impossible. Yes, our lives are marked by corruption. Let’s also think like this: Can we imagine clean and dirty things? For example clothes, flat, hands, cutlery or plates, car … Sure. Consequences mark our life after the sin of our grandparents. Today we commemorate the Church’s teaching that the Virgin Mary was “saved” and not “freed” from any evil. This is a challenge, a memento, an encouragement for each of us to make a more significant effort to protect each sin. Today’s Feast of the Immaculate Conception is an opportunity to reflect on your life as a way to preserve every sin. Let the words of the Virgin Mary remind us especially:

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“Behold, the handmaid of the Lord, let it be done unto me according to thy word” (Lk 1:38).

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These words will be spoken freely by the Virgin Mary at the angel’s proclamation. First, she listens to the announcement that her angel Gabriel is interpreting. It is a strange message that cannot be compared to history. Mary is to conceive a child. Mary is a woman and is no different from other women. There is a correct remark in the Gospel that he asks the angel, “For this, I will not know the man” (Luke 1:34). God acts in His love to save the world through one woman. Already in Paradise, words related to the Annunciation event were heard. At that time, in the so-called “protoevanjelije” of the first good news, God said to the devil: “I have set enmity between you and the woman, between your descendants and her descendants; Here is the beginning of the truth about the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary, which we know from the symbol of Mary standing with her feet on the serpent’s head. Mary does not do so of her power but the grace of her Son. This text of Scripture points to the unique significance of the holiness of the Virgin Mary. The Virgin Mary is the only woman from the human race who has been freed from any sin, including hereditary, so that she can fulfill the words that God has already said in Paradise.

Pope Pius XII In the encyclical “Fulgens corona” in 1953, to commemorate the centenary of the definition of the truth of the faith of the Immaculate Conception, he argues: If the Blessed Virgin Mary were deprived of God’s grace at some point because it was no longer an eternal enmity between her and the serpent, at least at this time, albeit as brief as the one in the original tradition, until the solemn proclamation of the Immaculate Conception, but somewhat inevitable enslavement (cf. AAS 45/1953/579).

Therefore, the absolute hostility that God has determined between the woman and the devil requires an immaculate conception in the Virgin Mary, that is, complete sinlessness from the beginning of her life. The Son of the Virgin Mary was defined as a victor over the devil, and his Mother had rejoiced before saving her from sin. Her son gave her the power to overcome the devil, and so in the mystery of the Immaculate Conception, he realized the most significant consequence of his redemptive work. The angel gives Mary the title “full of grace.” Paradise proves that the devil has no power over her because God has given her this privilege, which is the beginning of a new order, the fruit of friendship with God, and involves a deep enmity between the snake and humans.

In the book of the Revelation of St. John, there is a biblical testimony favoring the Immaculate Virgin Mary, where John writes of her as a woman clothed with the sun (cf. Rev 12: 1). John writes that the woman was pregnant and screamed in pain because she gave birth (cf. Rev 12: 2). This note points to the Mother of the Lord Jesus under the cross (cf. Jn 19:25), where she suffers from her son and where the Son gives her in the Apostle John as brothers and sisters of all people. For all her sufferings, John sees her “clothed in the sun,” an expression that says that the Virgin Mary is adorned with divine radiance, which indicates the most beautiful relationship between God and his people. Although these images do not directly point to the prerogative of the Immaculate Conception, they can be understood as an expression of the loving care of God the Father, which includes the Virgin Mary by the grace and radiance of the Spirit.

For us, it is a remembrance. Because the Book of Revelation addresses us to recognize the ecclesial dimension of the personality of the Virgin Mary uniquely, the woman clothed with the sun represents the holiness of the Church, which is fully realized in the Virgin Mary according to special grace.

St. Irenaeus represents the Virgin Mary as the new Eve who, by her faith and obedience, counterbalanced the unbelief and disobedience of the first Eve. We realize that in this economy of salvation, it is required that there be no room for sin in this role. We understand that both Christ, the new Adam, and Mary, the new Eve, knew no sin, that she was thus able to cooperate in redemption.

Sin, which overwhelms like flood humanity, stopped before the Redeemer and His most faithful co-worker. There is an essential difference between the two. The Lord Jesus is holy in the power of grace which in his human nature springs from the divine Person, and the Virgin Mary is sacred in the power of grace which she received because of the merits of her Son, the Saviour of the world (cf. General Audience of John Paul II, 29.IV.1996). Our Lady is our Mother. And it is here that we realize the power of her intercession. Her heart has not changed. She is the perfect image of the merciful God. So we know that we can and do receive many new graces through her.

She was responsible for this with her apparition at Lourdes when she presented herself to the little girl Bernadette on March 25, 1858: “I am the Immaculately Conceived.” It was only four years later that Pope Pius IX, with the Bull “Ineffability Deus,” proclaimed what the Church had realized, taught, and believed from the earliest times, that the Blessed Virgin Mary, from the moment of her conception, was uniquely preserved from every stain of sin.

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Although today’s world does not seem interested in the purity of heart, innocence, and sinlessness, we cannot say that the world is only evil or sinful. Today’s feast is a challenge to every person, just as we will hear at Midnight Mass when the angels magnify God and say to the shepherds on the plains of Bethlehem: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men of goodwill.” (Lk 2:14). In today’s words about people of goodwill, it is fitting that we, people who realize that in Mary Immaculately Conceived, we have a great intercessor, also want to be.

Those who have experienced the atmosphere of the pilgrimage to Lourdes in France and have opened their hearts to the Immaculate Conception have certainly felt and experienced the words of Our Lady in their souls.

I did not travel to Lourdes to ask for a miracle. Many say. But to ask for perseverance in good. A father also traveled to Lourdes in 1998 in a pilgrimage of the Immaculate Family at the express request of his son, who had been ill since birth. When his son was born, as the father publicly declared, – “I cursed God, and since then have not come to the Sacrament of Reconciliation for several decades. He decided to travel with his son as an escort at his son’s request. What he saw, what he experienced, the organization of the event, the relationships between people, the almost one hundred people as affected as his son, their smile, their satisfaction, the father not only cried for a long time, he said goodbye to Our Lady, but he made a holy confession. He said of his change of life: – “I thank all those who helped me to overcome my many sins and to convince myself that God is “Love” and Our Lady has not forgotten the promise that she will listen to everyone who takes refuge in her with trust.”

It would not be suitable if we expected a miracle in changing our lives or that we would be freed from all temptations and struggles for the purity of our souls. However, it is correct that we consciously and willingly cooperate with all the graces the Church offers us. Even today, on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we realize that God also loves us, and in the same way, Our Lady accepts us all as sons and daughters.

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Yes, a life without sin is possible. A plate, a car, dress hands get dirty when we use them for the activity they are made for. But God the Father created man in His image. God the Son redeemed us, and the Holy Spirit sanctifies us, teaches us, and reminds us of all that Jesus taught us. Apart from original sin, which every person comes into the world with but is forgiven in baptism without merit, we should guard against all personal evil.

Let us pray for fidelity and love of God through the intercession of our Immaculate Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary.

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St. Nicholas.

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Piety – affection for good

Religion is man’s relationship to God, our goal, the ideal of perfection. Therefore, all virtues belong and all good deeds to piety. So why should it be said still about the particular goodness of purity, religion? After all, however, we also know this concept from the general conversation. We say that someone is more or less pious. We understand that this includes many different responsibilities. But he goes here even an essential, inner attitude that can’t be easily guessed.
After all, we have three words in Slovak that have different colors of meaning: pious, pious, the piety of the disciples. Christianity is a religion of spirit and truth. Therefore Christian piety is above all internal property. If it is strongly external, we are talking more about faith, holiness. God willing, people often go to Church, bow before the cross. However, “Pious,” “bigoted,” is already an ugly sound. The external manifestations of piety are exaggerated, disproportionate, ridiculous, even if they are well thought out.
St. Thomas Aquinas defines righteousness according to his inner attitude as “affection for the will to all good man.” So it is not about individual deeds but the whole perspective. If someone is an avid athlete, we are sure that we can count on it whenever there is a sporting event. A music lover will not miss an excellent concert.
We assume a godly man to follow him we can turn whenever it’s about something good. If it supports the poor, to work in a Catholic association, 0 liturgical celebrations, a genuinely pious man is willing to help where he can. He takes it for granted. Because the highest good is God, a holy man, he is inclined to contact him as often as possible.
Prayer comes first in piety. Thus, piety is an important virtue. St. Thomas advises her for this right after the “divine” virtues before the so-called moral virtues.

External and internal piety
Godliness is an inner quality of the soul that is not externally visible. And yet, it manifests itself in some way. If she didn’t show up, she would even be very doubtful. Certain external forms are common in the Catholic Church piety. To what extent are they necessary and valuable? The lead to this question is different. Reform movements have always opposed extravagance. Richly decorated churches, gold ornaments, ceremonies, processions, incense all seem unnecessary to some people and even harmful. It is said to divert attention from sincere, inner piety in spirit and truth. We will not return to the old, long overdue dispute over external and internal purity. The main rule
is apparent. The whole man who composes must serve God from the soul and the body. Thus, in righteousness, the manifestations are internal One outdoor. Jesus Christ, the invisible God, was born visibly on earth and founded the Church, which is hidden and visible, cares for the souls of individuals and the transformation. Human coexistence. Therefore, its actions have a social character. In one moral handbook, we read the correct one, though a complex definition of righteousness: “It is a supernatural virtue. Here one expresses the obligatory respect for God, the originator, and the goal of the whole supernatural order. This man experiences his relationship with God in Christ in a symbolic expression. » For we cannot imagine the invisible God except in figurative terms: Father, Creator, etc. We can’t contact him directly yet. Therefore, we express our feelings and decisions with a symbol, an external image of inner thinking: in words, lifting or clapping hands, bowing, kneeling, etc.
This need for symbols has always been closely linked to religion and art. In the history of nations, we observe how art is created in the ceremonies of various cults. So they apply for ceremonies similar rules as for artists: outdoor the statement must be genuine, dignified, and proportionate to the internal content. We talk about oratory, where a slight inner feeling accompanies the outer gesture. Arne Novák called the opposite by strangulation, expressive immaturity. The idea should be strong enough to get a reasonable outside force to the statement. Western and Eastern Catholic administration contains a lot of forms of external piety. The Church kept them in a skeletal way. We do not deny that there is a danger of superficial forgiveness. Those who perform the ceremonies no longer need the spirit that animated their creators. It seems better to leave the external forms after that. Russian clergyman Theophane Zatvornik replies with great emphasis on this objection: “Do not abandon, but revive!” Poor is a view of the so-called modern Christians who cross themselves under the coat so that they will not see who will kneel in the Church steals and so clumsily that it arouses a smile. Who wrote about prayer, of course, as much as possible focused on emphasizing inner attitude and feelings man. The so-called ceremonies, ceremonies are left to experts in the liturgy. This division is practical, but the two that belong together must not be forgotten. The one who he prays with all his heart, he bears, as Origenes says, «on your body a picture of what is happening in the soul.» ” Notice,” writes St. Basil, “how the power of the soul affects the body, but also that how inner-thinking depends on the body! »
The beautiful liturgy elevates the soul. Genuine, honest, dignified behavior in the church is an effective apostolate that does not force it. It’s like saying, “Come on to see how we are serious about our relationship with God and faith! ” It is, therefore, essential to take care when raising children to behave appropriately in prayer, to shake hands, standing or kneeling. He argues that the child does not pray but plays in an outdoor theater. Indeed, it cannot end education for prayer by teaching about external forms. However, the path to the soul leads from the outside world.

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Whoever wants sees fantastic things.

The period of Advent also includes the visit of a priest to the sick who cannot visit the church due to their illness or old age, thus accepting the sacrament of reconciliation and the anointing of the sick. However, there are also cases where the son or daughter does not care about his soul, neglects his grandparents, and does not allow them to receive these sacraments. However, we have brothers and sisters among us who, although family ties do not bind them, often only neighbourly relations and will take care of the sacrament for these old and sick. I look forward to their dedication, love, and willingness to help these elderly believers.

This relationship reminds us of an event from this gospel. Jesus taught in one house surrounded by Pharisees and scribes who thought they were the most exemplary sons of Abraham, Isaac, and James. And yet, what happened then says something else. It is not enough to say, “Lord, Lord,” said the Lord Jesus, for faith without works is dead. And this is what the actions of the men who brought the paralysed man and tried to get him inside and put him in front of Jesus. But when they found no passage for the crowd, they brought him up to the roof, and let him down on the bed, and led him down straight before Jesus. When he saw their faith, he said, “Man, your sins are forgiven” (Lk 5:20). These words raised questions among the “perfect” attendees: “Who is it? After all, who is cursing! Who can forgive sins besides God?” They listened to Jesus’ words but did not receive them. Their hearts were far from Jesus, though physically so close. But Jesus perceived their thoughts and said unto them, What reason ye in your hearts? Which is easier – to say, “Your sins are forgiven,” or to say, “Arise and walk?” (Lk 5:23). And then he will give them proof that he is indeed the expected Messiah when he says, “But that you may know that the Son of man has the power to forgive sins on earth,” he said to the paralysed, “I say to you: Arise, get up your bed and go home!” (Lk 5.24).

However, the evangelist also wrote down the reaction of those who believed in the deity of Jesus Christ when he wrote: All were amazed and glorified, and they said, “We have seen admirable things today” (Lk 5:26). A believing Christian who arranges for a longing brother or sister to meet God on the sacraments knows how they rejoice and rejoice. Often the priest is pleased about such meetings because these are often incomprehensible things in which to see the joy and power of the Holy Spirit. However, it depends on how we are disposed of, that is, how we prepare, open up to the Lord Jesus, find time for him, or give our whole hearts to him. This is necessary when we meet the Lord Jesus—doing it out of conviction and realizing that it is not an everyday event.

Let us also remember the words of the centurion, whom Jesus praised for the words, “Lord, do not be weary, for I am not worthy to enter under my roof” (Lk 7: 6). that the Lord Jesus also looks at them with love and wants to bless them for it, to reward their efforts, care, and love. If one of you mediated reconciliation with God and died, he knows what an incredible joy it is for a believer. Still, At the same time, the strength that the one to whom we mediated the atonement with God begs for us is interceding so that we too may meet with the reconciliation of Jesus Christ. many times it does not cost so much, perhaps a little goodwill and time, and although the sick will not return to the health of the body, the health of the soul will return, which we lose consciously and voluntarily committed sin.

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Compassion for the sick, for the poor, for nature.

No one doubts that we should have compassion for the sick, for those who have suffered misfortune. Therefore, if one limb suffers, all the limbs suffer from it (1 Cor 12:26).
Even young, cheerful boys and girls should learn to visit the sick and minister to them. This is also important for the development of personality. Many of the so-called “problems” of youth and inner crises arise from concentrating too much on oneself. Contact with the pains of another distracts from selfish closeness, purifies, and eases the heart.
Material misery, even today in the world, is much greater than we are aware of. Recently, documents handed over to the United Nations show how a good three-quarter of humanity lacks even the necessities. With equal concern, as society is embarking on interplanetary explorations of space, we are to discover the misery and need of the people around that we may one day hear the voice of Christ himself: I have been I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat (Mt 25:35). Today, however, there are noble societies for the protection of animals, the security of animals, the security of forests, the protection of natural beauties. A gentle person has a kind of reverence and gentleness for everything that exists. Animal cruelty reveals a perverse affection and should be punished, especially in children. But let us avoid excessive sentimentality. Animals are not persons but things. They serve man. It is not immoral to hunt and kill animals. But it must not be lost sight of, as far as necessary, helpful, and equally a method, in the way it is done. The limits of mercy no one can be more merciful than God himself. Humanly, we say that even God’s patience has its limits and will one day cease towards the reprobate. More precisely, it does not cease.
God’s mercy, as the sun does not cease to shine. However, it does not penetrate where the windows are barred, to him who has closed himself off from God’s rays. Therefore, the great mysteries of the grave will not resolve the conjectures that only a kind of sentimental tolerance of everything will inspire. We certainly pray for all the dead because we know nothing of their fate. For all the living people, then, the gate of God’s mercy is still open. And yet even God Himself, according to the human expressions of Scripture, is angry, threatens, severely chastises, calamities come, calamities, wars. Atheists of all ages adduce these facts as evidence against the existence of God. Christians, on the contrary, believe in the providence of God. God leads us to good, when he punishes.
Genuine compassion cannot remain evil but uses all means of correction, even harsh punishment. Similarly, he seeks to act to the best of his ability. It would not be “merciful” state authorities who would let free to steal, to assault the innocent, who would suffer the public disorder. They are not merciful parents who spoiled their children, nor teachers who have taught their charges nothing. Ancient authors sometimes extolled Nemesis, the goddess of vengeance. Her spirit in man, the desire to track down every crime and punish every iniquity, is, according to Aristotle, a praiseworthy passion. We rightly say that the spirit of vengefulness is a pagan spirit. But we cannot so simplify the fact that we neglect justice for the sake of mercy. Sending a just order is a better act of love than undeserved kindness. Cowardice manifests itself under the auspices of understanding, especially where we forget our duties so as not to be inconvenienced. We are afraid to harm one we care about, even though others suffer who do not matter to us.

 

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Do I know John the Baptist?

How do we know people? From the direct knowledge that I will meet them, I talk, I see them with my own eyes and so on. We can also know a person by not meeting him directly. For example, he lives far away or has already died. Nowadays, film, camera, etc. can help us. When it comes to the distant past, such as the time two thousand years ago, it can help us in the specific case of John the Baptist, the Scriptures and the tradition of the Church.

Why is we so interested in the person of John the Baptist even today? These are the words of the Gospel, where we read, “Then the disciples understood that he spake unto them of John the Baptist” (Mt 17:13). This happened after the transformation on the mountain, where Peter, James and John saw him talking to Jesus, Moses and Elijah, and Peter exclaimed, “Lord, we are well here. If you want, I’ll make three stalls here … ”(Mt 17: 4). And as they came down from the mountain, the disciples asked Jesus, “Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?” (Mt 17:10). The Jews were convinced that Elijah would be born before the Messiah. Although the Lord Jesus confirms this opinion, he declares John the Baptist to be Elijah, who has actually fulfilled Elijah’s mission for the time being. We know about John the Baptist, what the angel Gabriel said to Zacharias when he offered the sacrifice in the temple: He himself will go before him with the spirit and power of Elijah to turn the hearts of the fathers to the sons and to bring the unbelievers to the wisdom of the righteous and to prepare the perfect people for the Lord ”(Lk 1: 15-17).

The words “in the spirit of Elijah” mean that John will speak with the same determination against the sins of the people and especially against the sins of their leaders, as Elijah once did when he spoke against the pagan queen Jezebel and her pagan priests. With the same zealous spirit, John will exhort the people to repentance. And John fulfilled this prediction of the angel. Herod Antipas was one of the sons of Herod the Great. From his father’s inheritance he received Galileo and Transcord, Pereu. He lured Her brother Philip’s wife, Herodias, and lived with her. She could not listen to what John the Baptist had allowed her to say when he accused her of not living with her husband’s brother. John was more afraid of God than she was, so he really acted like a prophet. Herodias used her power at the first opportunity to control Herod, and when her daughter, who liked Herod and his guests, performed, she showed to ask Herod’s head of John the Baptist. This completes John’s mission. John honestly fulfilled his mission as the announcer of the expected Messiah.

It is truly his humility, his devotion to the cause of God, when he declared, “A mighty man than I am after me” (Lk 3:16). When asked if he was the one to come or to wait for another, John did not deny and confessed, “I am not the Messiah” (Jn 1:20).

In this Advent time of preparation for the feasts of the Nativity of Jesus Christ, we should also know the person of John the Baptist as best we can. Not as he looked physically, but we should look at the content of his words, which he proclaimed as the forerunner of the Lord Jesus. These words are timely even today. They remind us of what is essential in preparation for the feasts of the Nativity and which we should not overlook. When we realize all this, we are to adjust our lives accordingly, which John likens to the path: “Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight” (Mark 1: 3b). For us, John’s words sound like an announcement of the salvation that the Messiah – Jesus Christ will bring us.

The answer to this short gospel should not be long in coming. We must not think long, make decisions. Time is fast approaching, the birth of the Son of God is at hand. Let us ask for the strength to profess our faith, to fulfil our religious duties with all faithfulness to God. Behold, our God is coming! John’s words are important to us. Let’s not despise John! When we learn to know John if we keep his words in the practice of the lives of believing Christians, then the world will know us not only by name, that we are believers, but above all by our words and deeds. The world thus learns that living with faith is a source even today.

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Second Sunday of Advent Lk 3,1-6

Invitation to the trip (Luke 3: 1-6)
God invited me to follow him.

Someone likened our lives to the road. God has invited us to embark on our way of life through our parents. None of us gave our lives, and none of us asked about the world. Our life is a gift we have received from God. We should be grateful for the gift and take care of the gift. We are aware of this at the beginning of this year’s liturgical year. A person’s life is said to have died or given up if he knew what to expect from fear and hardship.
The Lord Jesus knew of human misery and therefore accepted man’s nature. “He renounced himself, took the nature of a servant, became like people; and according to outward appearance he was considered a man” (Phil. 2: 7). He showed us the way, for he declared, “I am the way” (Jn 14: 6). Before leaving for the Father, the Apostles said, “And ye shall know the way where I go” (Jn 14: 4). His predecessor, St. John the Baptist, also invites us to follow Jesus.

“Prepare the way of the Lord, level his paths! Every valley is filled and every hill and hill is reduced. What is crooked will be straight, and what is bumpy will be a smooth path. And every flesh shall see the salvation of God” (Lk 3: 4-6; Isaiah 40: 3-5).

With these words, taken over by John the Baptist from the prophet Isaiah, the immediate history of salvation begins. They point to excellent care in locating those events from all over the world. The scriptures here do not serve with images, symbols, but with historical facts and precisely established chronology. The first of these facts is that God addresses his word to John, who is called to be a prophet and accepts a special mission. This will integrate into the historical series of prophetic tasks, both in terms of way of life and taking the assignment, which corresponds to the great prediction of the prophet Isaiah. Prophetic words are fulfilled in John. His special mission can also be seen in what John does, that is, in baptism. The prophets before him also called the nation to repentance. Through immersion in the waters of the Jordan, people bear public witness that they want to live differently: the purged wish to embark on the path of repentance. Jesus Christ began a new work in us and finished the job. The more faithfully we fulfil Jesus’ words, the greater the reward awaits us at his second coming. Therefore, the actual words of the prophet Isaiah, which John the Baptist reminds us: “Prepare the way of the Lord, level his paths! Every valley is filled, and every hill and hill is reduced. What is crooked will be straight, and what is bumpy will be a smooth path. And every flesh shall see the salvation of God” (Lk 3: 4-6; Isaiah 40: 3-5). It is a challenge to embark on the life path of the Lord, which will end for the whole world at the end of time. We understand liturgical Advent as a time of preparation for Christmas, a time of joyful anticipation, but also a time of joyful repentance. Seeing this in the apostle Paul’s call to the Philippians: “Brethren, rejoice in the Lord continually. I repeat: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all people. The Lord is near” (Philippians 4: 4-5).

On the path of life, one is aware of one’s constant transformation. A small child grows into a larger child, a teenager, then a man or a woman, and finally old age comes. Man has aged since his conception. When we realize that we have reason and free will, we become responsible for our thoughts, words, and actions. And that makes us significantly different from other living or non-living nature. We realize that our lives are not a coincidence, that we live at all, that we live today, that we are what we are, and that we realize that we are rightly accountable to the world and that we will also be responsible to God for our manifestations in life. Imagine a potter who takes the clay made into his hands, puts it on a potter’s wheel, which he sets in motion, and at the same time transforms the clay into a particular object, such as a jug, vase, or candlestick. It is always just clay, let it be in the state of preparation for formation, whether the rough shape of the object begins to form from clay, and it is clay even when the project finishes, decorates. Even then, it is clay when the subject already serves its purpose. And it is clay even when we break an object, destroy it and only shards remain after it when it is difficult to know what the bits come from.

We must realize that man is human before he is born. When we connect the first cells of a man and a woman, we talk about a new person. Although we do not yet see a man with the naked eye at that time, he is already a man who has his soul; he already has in himself – as geneticists say – encoded everything that the eyes will see much later, until man’s death. It has had its way since its inception. No one can make a statement of destruction, of murder, because no one has given him this power. Therefore, one does not have the right to consciously and voluntarily end one’s life in any life situation. Likewise, none of the people has a right over human life, only God.
That is why we realize the importance of our way of life, the responsibility for everything that happens when we use reason and free will. An unborn child has rights that his parents cannot deny him, not a stranger, like a doctor. Therefore, an adult should also fulfil the obligations that society imposes on him when they are not against the will of God. A man should always do God’s will on his way of life. God did not give a man much power to perform abortion or euthanasia in the name of his science, life.

On the contrary, God asks each person to live on the path of life so that he will always do God’s will. God wants us to always be in touch with our God. They lived in friendship with him. When we have departed from the path God has given us by sin, we are to remove sin, that is, to level the sidewall, to fill the valley, to reduce every hill and hill, and to make a bumpy path smooth (cf. Lk 3: 4-6). Repentance, confession of our sins, a life of prayer, acts of Christian physical and spiritual mercy, faithful obedience to the commandments of God and the Church are our assurance that we are friends of God, brothers, and sisters in Christ.

Advent reminds us of the great trust that God Himself shows us on our journey through life. He trusts us. We can indicate this in the story of David Wilkerson from his book The Cross and the Dagger.
It’s his story of what he survived among young people in the New York underworld gangs. He also talks about Nick, who came to a religious meeting with his team. Nick recalls, “We came to the meeting with the intention of making the preacher perfect … A woman in the stadium was playing organ, and I told the boys to step on their feet and shout to start doing something. A young woman came out on stage and began to sing. I started whistling and everyone laughed. The events went the way I wanted, and I was satisfied. Finally, the preacher came out and, before his speech, called those present to charity. I thought he wanted to sneer like everyone else. He said: “I ask the gang members to collect alms themselves. Then let them go behind the curtain and come to the podium.” I thought he was unaware of something. Everyone knew that behind the curtain was a door, and it was open. “Six volunteers, please,” he said. I was on my feet at that moment. I identified six boys and they came to him. I intended to make him a good day or make a fool of him. We wanted to start now, but he delayed us and prayed for a long time. I wanted to laugh. The whole area belonged to us. When I thought someone gave a small amount, I stood with him until he gave more. Everyone knew who Nick was. Then we all met behind the curtain. The door was there – and open. Some in the audience began to laugh. They knew what we were planning. My boys were waiting for the signal to leave. But I stood. Suddenly I understood. That preacher believed me. This has never happened to me before.” The preacher’s behaviour impressed the boy, the gang leader, so much that not only did they hand over all the money raised, but it was also the beginning of a change in his life. Thus, in Nick’s life began a new journey, the journey to the Lord or the return, to which he invites St. John Baptist. Nick realized that the preacher trusted him. That changed his life.

God also trusts us. It’s Advent. Waiting time. A time of change, improvement of the goal, and meaning of our lives. God trusts us. We realize this is a fantastic thing. God trusts me. God gives me hope. God loves me.

When we compare our lives to the path, it is clear that it is easier to walk or travel straight. Anyone who chooses a highway will not take fourth-class roads because the route is safer, faster, or more pleasant. When do we realize that God is our goal and not the ordinary? Who would be so foolish as to give priority to a plan of lower quality? And that is why, during the Eucharistic Sacrifice, we ask for mercy from Christ, foretold by John the Baptist.

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Striving for consistency between words and deeds.

We all know that the greatest enemy of the Lord Jesus is often us as believers. Unbelievers rightly criticize us when they see our lives at odds with the words we speak. In this time of preparation for the Feast of the Nativity of the Lord Jesus, we want to improve our relationship with God, not to be blamed for being a mismatch between our words and our actions. The Evangelist Matthew also wants to help us do this when he recorded the terms of the Lord Jesus for us as well, “Not everyone who speaks to me: Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” (Mt. 7:21).

The Lord Jesus speaks of the twofold foundation on which men place their relationship to God. One stays comfortably on the surface, namely, at words, concepts, wise sayings, formal execution. Others go to the depths, to the rock; that is, they seek to understand the Lord Jesus’s terms and put them into practice. We know, however, from other professions and fields, how essential it is in training to heed the prohibitions, the groundwork, which often takes much time, drains a lot of finances, and yet pays off when the foundation is sufficiently deep or firmly laid. It would be downright risky if this did not apply all the more so about God. If the Lord Jesus seems harsh to us when He called a man a fool who only listens to and does not implement His word, it is probably only because He wanted to make wise builders out of the worldly hearers, and therefore out of us as well.

Frequently, however, we join the majority who make light of their position. He wants to reach the goal quickly and as cheaply as possible. Lamentations, tears, and the sight of a burning pyre are not pleasant, not only in the material realm but also in the spiritual realm. Too bad we do not take notice of the soul, if not of Christ and His teachings. And here is where the care we had for the beginnings of our faith will show itself. Let us remind ourselves that the preparation time for First Holy Communion, Confirmation, is not enough. How is not enough only the knowledge of the first grades of elementary school, how isn’t enough at least the folk wisdom that says it is easier to learn from the mistakes of another than from one’s own? Because even in the sphere of our soul, faith, convictions, the winds blow and precipitate themselves on our house of faith, in adulthood, children’s dresses, we must often build up our spiritual life in silence, unobtrusively, for years, indeed, often using renunciations of voluntary and permitted things.

Putting it off until later is a sign of disappointment that can destroy more, and we don’t even realize it at first. Even a thief does not become a thief all at once, but gradually. Nor is good character a thing of one day. For example, even you who are preparing for marriage. Isn’t good preparation, renunciation, self-control, self-control needed? Good practice for marriage will prevent divorce, abortion, infidelity. A career is a madness that has already crossed many people’s plans. I’ll be different in retirement… Heart attack, stroke, unforeseen cancer, house built on sand. The betrayal of faith, the nodding, the things overlooked without a word… Where a believer can speak up, stand up for… All of this also brings the fact that God cannot be offended. God’s mills grind slowly but surely: “Whoever denies me before men, I will also deny before my Father who is in heaven” (Mt 10:33).

What to do? The answer is in the words of the Lord Jesus, “Only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven will enter the kingdom of God” (Mt. 7:21). And let us recall the words of James the Apostle: “So also faith: if it has not works, it is dead in itself” (Jam. 2:17). Let us unite our minds with the teachings of the Lord Jesus. Often we may find that life is more complicated with Jesus, more arduous, but that makes our yoke joyful and worthwhile. Proverbs says: “The whip cracks only at the end.” And we don’t think of the end as painful but joyful. Let us avoid bad examples. Let us not allow unbelievers to judge us. Let us not always and everywhere say what we think. Let us guard our words. Let us frequently remember the counsel of the Lord Jesus, “But when thou goes to pray, enter into thy closet, shut the door behind thee, and pray to thy Father which is in secret. And your Father will reward you, for he sees even in secret” (Mt 6:6).

 

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Advent time of reconciliation.

Before the holidays,very woman schedules time for central cleaning of the flat: wipe off the dust, clean the windows, spruce it up, organize… It is, for many women, an inherent and yet so commonplace matter. However, not only for women but all of us who enjoy reason and free will, the Advent season should be used above all for inner cleansing. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is therefore not a secondary matter for the Christian believer.

In the Gospel of Matthew, he tells of how whole crowds came to Jesus… and Jesus healed them. It is said that in a clean dwelling, there is also healthy life. Especially those who have damp, wet, or not bright, well-ventilated flats know this. Similarly, we can also speak of the soul. Often we have brought this on ourselves, and – our soul bears the undesirable consequences. We are sick. There is sin in our souls. But Jesus invites us to Himself. We didn’t read in the Gospel that he begged anyone, asked anyone to come to him. The crowd came willingly, and they came because they realized that Jesus could help them, give them what they could not get, buy, and procure elsewhere. Entire crowds came to Jesus. They did not come out of curiosity, out of longing, but they desired that Jesus would heal them. Jesus laid his hands on them; others at least touched the hem of his garment so that their request would be granted.

Jesus listens to everyone. We have no report in the Gospels that he didn’t listen to anyone, though some struggled a lot to do so. The Canaanite woman pleaded much for her daughter. Jesus heard her because of her strong faith, even though she was a Gentile, and granted her wish. Indeed, there were more unbelievers among those present. Matthew tells of the reaction of many who saw that the dumb speak, the disabled are made whole, the lame walk, and the blind see, were amazed and glorified God for all things. Not a few, indeed, in their flesh, though they had previously come in disbelief, returned in health, not only physically but spiritually as well. For in more than one case, Jesus said: “Go, thy faith hath made thee whole!” (Mk 10:52). But we know that he dismissed some sick, saying, “… but go, show yourself to the priest, and offer a sacrifice for your cleansing….” (Mk 1,44). However, to the sinners, he said: “Go and sin no more!” (Jn. 8:11). This means that Jesus did not heal only sick bodies, though there were more of them than those He healed in spirit. Today, the tables have turned. God has given men reason, and therefore He has chosen some to be physicians of human bodies. These restore health. But even here, we often sigh: the physician heals, the Lord God heals!

The Lord Jesus is also present in the sacrament of the priesthood, where He manifests His spiritual power. The sacramental absolution, the priest’s forgiveness to his brothers and sisters, not in his name but as the representative of Jesus on earth, cannot be mediated by himself. Still, he needs another priest to grant him this grace. Whoever can appreciate this small act given by Jesus Christ to the Church, which we call the Sacrament of Reconciliation, does not count the minutes spent in preparation for this moment of forgiveness of sins. We have marvelled many times that God is so good to us. Those who have not understood this will say this too: “You are forgiven and can sin again.” These are words insulting to God, dishonouring this great gift. These are the words of an ignorant man, words full of dislike. We are weak. We know that we will not last long without some weakness, some mistake or error, without more strength. In the Sacrament of Reconciliation, every intention that we call good must have the resolution that we will guard against sin, that we will forsake the near occasion of sin, that we will ask for help to persevere in good.

We know that those whom Jesus healed became sick again after a time and had to die. We must realize that frequent reception of this sacrament will strengthen us so that we will more easily persevere in good. Our sound will must prevail. Let us do all we can to perform this sacrament well. Let us use the time to prepare for it and, after receiving the sacrament, let us step out with the determination to remain faithful to Jesus, and in that state, let us live the feasts for which we are preparing. What we have failed to do so far, let us try this year.

Yes, order and cleanliness in our homes are needed. But this is our temporary home. We know we are called to eternity, so let us purify our lives in the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

 

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Roads to God

Our whole life is the way to God. The way to God is simple. It was found by all people of all times and nations. Philosophers and scientists have found their way to God, but so have they. Who had no idea what philosophy and science were but had common sense and could be open to the deeper side of life and its secrets? Even those who knew how to be natural felt the way to God, that they could not understand everything, that they also encountered incomprehensible things. The more they researched stuff themselves, the clearer it became that not everything could be explored. Not everything can be explained by causal processes alone. All this amazes one. A person who cannot wonder does not perceive the great time of the world and life for a great time. He understands only one side of things. Maybe he analyses, uses and controls. We’ll say it’s practical. But everything behind it escapes him. So one gradually loses sense of other essential aspects of things, the world, life. Only a person who can admire gets on the path to God. We have more theories about the possible origin of the world and the things of this world. But each of these theories presupposes a miracle. Whether it is the theory of eternity or the idea of mutation, whoever transmits it with a light heart has no problems. One can copy improbability to improbability.
Imagine a stalk of wheat—height more than a meter. And the diameter of the stem is two, three millimetres. At the top carries a limb. The wind moves him, and the stalk does not break. It’s ingeniously constructed that we admire it, but we can’t imitate it yet. We can’t form a branch. And yet, the stem is created around us and without us. It will satisfy us if someone says it is a coincidence. He who does not want the truth to triumph over him will triumph over it. If some people do not care about the fact, it is unnecessary to prove something to them. However, it is an excellent lesson about the nature of man and his possible attitude to the question of God. He does not prove God in the true sense. We seek and discover God. The belief in the existence of God is one of the knowledge and discoveries that we gain only if we have a genuine interest. Whoever finds and knows God must have a genuine interest in him. Who speaks confidently. Prove to me that God exists; he will probably never find God. Whoever wants to see God must seek Him. He must be attentive. First, he must be able to keep quiet, and he must be able to wait. If you want to experience the beauty of the forest, you can’t ride a motorcycle in the woods. He must walk silently to watch. Then he will see everything; he will discover everything. For example, flowers, birds, beasts. He who seeks God must be open and full of interest. Today’s naturalists are increasingly expressing respect for faith in God. Werner von Braun, for example, said. The better we understand the structure of the atom, the nature of life, and the course of the Milky Way, the more reasons we have to marvel at the wonder of God’s creation. Our need for God is not based on fear. Man requires God no less than bread, water, and air.

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