Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 524 – Part IV.


YOUCAT Question n. 524 - Part IV. What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”?


(Youcat answer repeated) Merciful forgiveness -the mercy that we show to others and the mercy that we ourselves seek- is indivisible. If we ourselves are not merciful and do not forgive one another, God’s mercy will not reach our hearts.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2843) Thus the Lord's words on forgiveness, the love that loves to the end (Cf. Jn 13:1), become a living reality. The parable of the merciless servant, which crowns the Lord's teaching on ecclesial communion, ends with these words: "So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart" (Cf. Mt 18:23-35). It is there, in fact, "in the depths of the heart," that everything is bound and loosed. It is not in our power not to feel or to forget an offense; but the heart that offers itself to the Holy Spirit turns injury into compassion and purifies the memory in transforming the hurt into intercession.

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Many people have a lifelong struggle with their inability to forgive. The deep blockade of being unreconciled is resolved only by looking to God, who adopted us “while we were yet sinners” (Rom 5:8). Because we have a kind Father, forgiveness and reconciliation in life are possible. 
(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2844) Christian prayer extends to the forgiveness of enemies (Cf. Mt 5:43-44), transfiguring the disciple by configuring him to his Master. Forgiveness is a high-point of Christian prayer; only hearts attuned to God's compassion can receive the gift of prayer. Forgiveness also bears witness that, in our world, love is stronger than sin. The martyrs of yesterday and today bear this witness to Jesus. Forgiveness is the fundamental condition of the reconciliation of the children of God with their Father and of men with one another (Cf. 2 Cor 5:18-21; John Paul II, DM 14).      
 
(This question: What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”? is continued)

Monday, September 24, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 524 – Part III.

YOUCAT Question n. 524 - Part III. What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”?


(Youcat answer repeated) Merciful forgiveness -the mercy that we show to others and the mercy that we ourselves seek- is indivisible. If we ourselves are not merciful and do not forgive one another, God’s mercy will not reach our hearts.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2841) This petition is so important that it is the only one to which the Lord returns and which he develops explicitly in the Sermon on the Mount (Cf. Mt 6:14-15; 5:23-24; Mk 11:25). This crucial requirement of the covenant mystery is impossible for man. But "with God all things are possible" (Mt 19:26).

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Many people have a lifelong struggle with their inability to forgive. The deep blockade of being unreconciled is resolved only by looking to God, who adopted us “while we were yet sinners” (Rom 5:8). Because we have a kind Father, forgiveness and reconciliation in life are possible.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2842) This "as" is not unique in Jesus' teaching: "You, therefore, must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect"; "Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful"; "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another" (Mt 5:48; Lk 6:36; Jn 13:34). It is impossible to keep the Lord's commandment by imitating the divine model from outside; there has to be a vital participation, coming from the depths of the heart, in the holiness and the mercy and the love of our God. Only the Spirit by whom we live can make "ours" the same mind that was in Christ Jesus (Cf. Gal 5:25; Phil 2:1,5). Then the unity of forgiveness becomes possible and we find ourselves "forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave" us (Eph 4:32).

(This question: What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”? is continued)


Sunday, September 23, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 524 – Part II.


YOUCAT Question n. 524 - Part II. What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”?


(Youcat answer repeated) Merciful forgiveness—the mercy that we show to others and the mercy that we ourselves seek —is indivisible. If we ourselves are not merciful and do not forgive one another, God’s mercy will not reach our hearts.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2839) With bold confidence, we began praying to our Father. In begging him that his name be hallowed, we were in fact asking him that we ourselves might be always made more holy. But though we are clothed with the baptismal garment, we do not cease to sin, to turn away from God. Now, in this new petition, we return to him like the prodigal son and, like the tax collector, recognize that we are sinners before him (Cf. Lk 15:11-32, 18:13). Our petition begins with a "confession" of our wretchedness and his mercy. Our hope is firm because, in his Son, "we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins" (Col 1:14; Eph 1:7). We find the efficacious and undoubted sign of his forgiveness in the sacraments of his Church (Cf. Mt 26:28; Jn 20:23). 

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Many people have a lifelong struggle with their inability to forgive. The deep blockade of being unreconciled is resolved only by looking to God, who adopted us “while we were yet sinners” (Rom 5:8). Because we have a kind Father, forgiveness and reconciliation in life are possible.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2840) Now - and this is daunting - this outpouring of mercy cannot penetrate our hearts as long as we have not forgiven those who have trespassed against us. Love, like the Body of Christ, is indivisible; we cannot love the God we cannot see if we do not love the brother or sister we do see (Cf. l Jn 4:20). In refusing to forgive our brothers and sisters, our hearts are closed and their hardness makes them impervious to the Father's merciful love; but in confessing our sins, our hearts are opened to his grace.
 
(This question: What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”? is continued)

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 524 – Part I.


YOUCAT Question n. 524 - Part I. What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”?


(Youcat answer) Merciful forgiveness -the mercy that we show to others and the mercy that we ourselves seek- is indivisible. If we ourselves are not merciful and do not forgive one another, God’s mercy will not reach our hearts.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2862) The fifth petition begs God's mercy for our offences, mercy which can penetrate our hearts only if we have learned to forgive our enemies, with the example and help of Christ.      

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Many people have a lifelong struggle with their inability to forgive. The deep blockade of being unreconciled is resolved only by looking to God, who adopted us “while we were yet sinners” (Rom 5:8). Because we have a kind Father, forgiveness and reconciliation in life are possible.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2838) This petition is astonishing. If it consisted only of the first phrase, "and forgive us our trespasses," it might have been included, implicitly, in the first three petitions of the Lord's Prayer, since Christ's sacrifice is "that sins may be forgiven." But, according to the second phrase, our petition will not be heard unless we have first met a strict requirement. Our petition looks to the future, but our response must come first, for the two parts are joined by the single word "as." 

(This question: What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”? is continued)

Friday, September 21, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 523 – Part III.


YOUCAT Question n. 523 - Part III. Why does man not live on bread alone?


(Youcat answer repeated) “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Mt 4:4, citing Deut 8:3).

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2837 b) Finally in this connection, its heavenly meaning is evident: "this day" is the Day of the Lord, the day of the feast of the kingdom, anticipated in the Eucharist that is already the foretaste of the kingdom to come. For this reason it is fitting for the Eucharistic liturgy to be celebrated each day. The Eucharist is our daily bread. The power belonging to this divine food makes it a bond of union. Its effect is then understood as unity, so that, gathered into his Body and made members of him, we may become what we receive.... This also is our daily bread: the readings you hear each day in church and the hymns you hear and sing. All these are necessities for our pilgrimage (St. Augustine, Sermo 57, 7: PL 38, 389).

  Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) This passage of Scripture reminds us that men have a spiritual hunger that cannot be satisfied by material means. One can die for lack of bread, but one can also die because one has received bread alone. In a profound sense we are nourished by the one who has “the words of eternal life” (Jn 6:68) and a food that does not perish (Jn 6:27): the Holy Eucharist.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2837 c) The Father in heaven urges us, as children of heaven, to ask for the bread of heaven. [Christ] himself is the bread who, sown in the Virgin, raised up in the flesh, kneaded in the Passion, baked in the oven of the tomb, reserved in churches, brought to altars, furnishes the faithful each day with food from heaven (St. Peter Chrysologus, Sermo 67 PL 52, 392; Cf. Jn 6:51).   

(The next question is: What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”?)