#47 JOURNEY TO PERFECT VISION

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Dear Doctimus Prime, there is a biblical saying that, “No one goes to war without first assessing him armoury”. In the same light, to have a fruitful time in Church on Sunday, it helps to have a sneak preview of what to expect. Here are a few things I hope to hear tomorrow.

  1. Pilgrimage

The words of the Salve Regina, the “Hail Holy Queen”, describes us as “poor banished children of Eve”. We are on a pilgrim journey through life. But we can choose to either be at peace in God’s house or be exiled through sin. The exiles spoken of in Jeremiah’s prophecy, represent all of us whom God calls from the slavery of sin to a new life in him. To move from sin’s slavery to holiness indicates knowledge of the evil of sin and a readiness to part ways with it.

How can you break ties with the bad habits that enslave you? How do you turn to what the Gospel teaches? Like a lot of others, you are spiritually weak, lame and blind and find it difficult not only to move but even to know what path the Lord wants you to follow. There is reason to despair if you only rely on yourself to overcome your weaknesses. Prophet Jeremiah reminds us that God takes particular care of those who cannot walk alone. God wants to lead you.

  1. Divine Fatherhood

The Scriptures describe God as our “Father”, the One from whom every fatherhood in the world takes its name (Eph 3:14,15). The roles of a father are namely, life-giver, protector and provider. In the normal course of family life, a father is responsible for giving life through the sexual expression of his love for his wife. He is the one who defends the family from outside threats; in extreme cases that can involve a violent intervention. He provides for his wife and children, as a wage-earner and breadwinner, a wise counsellor, patient teacher and steady emotional support. But all these are attributes that properly belong to God and earthly fathers only share in the Fatherhood of God. God is our Father.

The Scriptures tell us too that Jesus is the image of the unseen God (Heb 1:1,2; Jn 14:9). Jesus is the Eternal High Priest, our Mediator with the Father and our companion on our spiritual journey. To have seen Christ is to have seen the Father. Through Jesus Christ, God the Father nourishes us, protects and provides for us his children (Heb 5:5-6). He knew suffering and temptation and so has compassion on our frailty (Heb 5:7-10).

Jesus confers this priesthood on his Apostles and their disciples. The priest today, following in Christ’s footsteps, is chosen by God to serve God’s people. The word ministry means “service” and ministers are servants. There primary duty is to offer prayers and sacrifices on behalf of the people. A priest is able to bring our supplication to God in prayer and sacrifice because he is acquainted with sin and suffering. You cannot say to your priest, “Father, you don’t understand” because he is a human being, living in the same world with you. He is able to sympathise with you and pray for you because he understands.  You on your part, should pray for Him and listen to him as a child would listen to a father. Pray for your priests, that their humanity may be strengthen by God’s grace in order to lead you ultimately to eternal happiness with God.

  1. Sight to the Blind

The blind Bartimaeus represents many of us today who choose to be blind to the Gospel, preferring what we want to believe about our relationship with Christ to what Christ wants us to do. So many people today are comfortable with their own notions of faith, whether or not it goes contrary to what God has revealed through the Church. When I say “Church”, I mean the gathering of God’s people to whom he has revealed himself in the Word, in the tradition and teachings that have come to us through the Apostles and through the Sacraments.

God can neither deceive nor be deceived. He only tells us the truth. And He reveals the truth about our eternal destiny through His Church. When you do all that God teaches you through his Church, you are being led from blindness to true sight. Just as some members of the crowd in the Gospel helped Bartimaeus come to Jesus, some people in the Church are there to help you come to Christ. You will do well to listen, to observe and to act accordingly.

The one who realizes his blindness readily seeks help. But the one who is oblivious of his blindness does not realise his wretched state. Ask for grace to hear the sound of excitement from others who have truly encountered God, and for courage to abandon your old way of life and embrace true freedom; shed off the cloak of self-deceit and come to Christ. Your happiness cannot wait.

Yours,

BLOGATRON

#46 WISDOM IS WEALTH

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Who needs wisdom when you have wealth?”

I can almost hear the average Nigerian youth speaking. It is easy to be disillusioned when you are hungry. Who can blame you? Desperate times do not always call for desperate measures. Sometimes you have to sit and look at the situation carefully before acting. Now back to the issue at hand. If you have to choose between wealth and wisdom, which would you go for? Let me tell a story before you give me your answer:

A rich young man came to Jesus and asked a very curious question, “Good Master, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” It is curious that he would be asking for something from a poor itinerant preacher like Christ. To be rich implies that you have very little need of others. But here he was asking for what to do in order to live. He probably has realised something that most rich people find hard to admit to themselves. He realised that he was empty. “What must I do to inherit eternal life?” (Mk 10:17).

It is interesting that he said “inherit”. An inheritance is not a right. It is a gift, a privilege, something someone else has worked for. Jesus, by his life, death and resurrection, gained eternal life for everyone who believes in Him (cf. Jn 3:16,17). The rich young man sought something that money cannot buy. Jesus tells Him that the only way to earn eternal life is to lay down the false security he clung so tightly to. Jesus is not saying that wealth is evil. He is pointing out that if your gifts are only used for your selfish gains, then it is useless. True wealth seeks to make others better. Others must share in the gifts that God has given you (cf. James 1:17). Wisdom helps you realise this fact. To possess wisdom is to have true wealth. And true wealth is that which builds others in the community. In using your gifts to make others better, you receive the gifts of eternal life. In fact, to have wisdom is to have everything.

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It takes wisdom to see Christ as the truth and to follow Him. Wisdom alone opens our eyes to our need for God and the gift of eternal life. King Solomon who is famed as the richest man in the Scriptures had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to ask God for anything he wanted. But he humbly asked for “wisdom…a wise heart that is able to distinguish good and evil” (1Kg 33:4-15). Wealth and the beauty of life is nothing compared to wisdom. When we seek the world and all the pleasures it afford for their own sake, we are soon exhausted and left with a bitter aftertaste in our mouths. How many times have you longed for the latest phone, dress or car only to receive it? How did it make you feel? Did it give you the joy you expected? Maybe it did but not for long. Does that tell you something about the world and created things? There is nothing in this created world that can give you happiness.

Now back to the question: The question itself is misleading. It is not the case of either-or. Wealth is God’s gift to some for the good of all. They must seek to better the lives of others by it.

Yours,

BLOGATRON

#45 WHAT GOD HAS JOINED

Bride and groom hugging under veil
Bride and groom hugging under veil

Dear Doctimus Prime,

Today I wish to lay down some important information about the thorny subject of marriage:

A stage of Maturity

The three most important events in a person’s life are birth, marriage and death. The first two are greeted with great joy. The last is greeted with mixed feelings depending on how well a person has lived and what he has done for his family and society at large. Marriage signals a stage of maturity for both men and women. At this point they make a lifelong decision to be united to another person with whom they intend to share their whole life and build a family. Marriage is a special sacrament and vocation for the Christian because it underscores a lot of important points about our vocation as human beings and Christians.

Relationship of a Lifetime

The primary purpose of marriage is the reciprocal love of husband and wife. Their union is one that should last their whole lives and afford them an opportunity to strengthen each other. This means that both of them must learn to offer each other their time, gifts and affection. In the Church, marriage is a sacrament, which confers graces on its recipients. They no longer rely simply on their own strength to be faithful, loving and selfless in their new life. The rings they offer each other is a sign of their love and fidelity. They are also to welcome and educate the children born to their union.

Love Not Use

St John Paul II once wrote that “the opposite of love is use”. This is because it is possible to claim to love someone when all you are really interested in is to use them to satisfy your selfish needs for sex, financial security and status. Marriage affords these pleasures and more but it is not reducible to them. A person who only sees marriage for the good it can bring will remain lonely even when they are not alone.

Equality

Marriage underscores the equality of Man and Woman. The Book of Genesis speaks of God’s intention to create a helpmate for the man (Gen 2:18). A man and woman ought to complement each other. The man is incomplete without the woman and vice versa; their life together is something they should work out together.

A Walk Together

Marriage demands a common plan between the couple. This common plan simply means that they intend to spend the rest of their lives together. Divorce is out of the question because it should never be the plan of two adults who wish to spend their lives together to one day reject this decision. Wherever difficulties arise, it is best for both parties to seek peaceful resolutions to problems. When it becomes clear that they can no longer live together, a peaceful separation should be sought and provision must be made for children born to the union, if there are any.

Faith and Love

Experience has shown that there is a better understanding between couples who share the same faith than those who do not. This is simply because what a person knows and believes forms a substantial and foundational part of who they are. A discord on this ground will affect how they understand each other and what their children should learn. Through our faith, Jesus is able to help us because he has become one like us.

Die a Little

Jesus insists on the original plan of God for union between man and woman because many cultures and their practices has entrenched abuses and the subjugation of women (Mk 12:2-16). Divorce does not protect the interest of the woman and does not help the man appreciate womanhood. True love is only found when it is tested. Jesus offered his life to prove His love for us His Church (Eph 5:25). The least you can do is die in little ways for the sake of your spouse.

Love and Show

Children learn from what they see. There is no better legacy to pass to your children than a loving home, that they see each other as family. The love between spouses teaches their children to see themselves as inseparable parts of each other. As they grow older they are able to appreciate a life of self-sacrifice which will help them build loving homes of their own and others to offer themselves in priestly and religious consecration in the Church.

Ambassadors to Society

Marriage and the family are so important to the Church and society. We must do what we can to preserve and strengthen it. Prayer, personal development and responsibility, sound civil and religious education, a spirit of forgiveness and tolerance are steps towards reviving the marriage institution and placing it at the heart of society and the Church.

Yours,

BLOGATRON

#44 WE ARE ONE

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Dear Doctimus Prime,

A Nigerian adage says that broom sticks tied in a bunch is not easily broken. But a broom stick that chooses to stand alone will sooner or later be broken. This saying is true about our vocation as Christians. We are called together into the Body of Christ, his Church to strengthen and build each other up (1 Cor 12:12-31).

“Us” And “Them”

Many times we act in ways that show that we have clearly misunderstood Christ’s call to unity and love. Many times we emphasize what divides us and not what unites. Sometimes we emphasize the fact that some people are not part of our fold that we overlook the good that they are doing. We see a similar reaction in the Apostles themselves. They tried to stop an exorcist who did great works in Jesus’ name (See Mk 9:38-43,45-48). Like them, we choose those we relate with based on whether “he is one of us” or not. By so doing we lose out on the great potential and fresh insight which a person can bring to a group. In the same way too, never ridicule the beliefs or faith of others. You have received the fullness of divine revelation in the Church. This should not prevent you from seeing the light in what others are doing. Improve your knowledge and point others to the truth as well.

Celebrate Over Hate

Joshua whom Moses had raised, fell into a similar trap when he begged his master to stop two men from prophesying simply because they were not in the tent of meeting when the spirit descended (See Num 11:25-29). You are not to envy others simply because God has chosen to be gracious to them and bless them. If you are not as endowed materially and spiritually, God is probably teaching you to be more dependent on Him.

Be A Hero

Speaking of dependence, there are persons who look up to you for their spiritual or material development. Greed should find no place in your heart. The inordinate desire to acquire things even at the expense of others in unchristian (See James 5:1-6). Others look to you for inspiration in the Christian life. Let your life be a proof of God’s grace which leads you to show love. We learn each day and there is no one too old to learn something new. Let God’s law of love be your guiding principle. As we seek unity and inner peace with God and others in the coming week, may we find Him attending to our needs.

Yours,

BLOGATRON.

#43 FROM SEED TO TREE

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Dear Doctimus Prime,

Here are my thoughts on today’s Gospel reading (Mk 4:26-34). I narrowed down to a stimulating verse:

Mk 4:26 “A man throws seed on the land. Night and day, while he sleeps…the seed is sprouting and growing; how, he does not know.”

GROWTH

Growth is a normal feature of daily life yet it is the most elusive; we see it yet we cannot track it. You don’t notice your children actually growing in front of your eyes. You only notice their clothes are no longer big enough for them and that they begin to walk without help.

SPIRITUAL!

In the spiritual life, growth is imperceptible but continuous. It begins at Baptism and progresses with the other sacraments till the end of our lives. The Word and Sacraments, when they are received in faith, are in the heart a work of grace. The Spirit of God carries on the work of grace without our notice (Job 33;15,16).

INTEREST

Christ’s interest in the world and in the heart is a growing interest; and though the beginning be small, the latter end will greatly increase. The growth of grace in a soul comes at last to perfection at “harvest time”. At harvest time, Christ accepts the services which are done to him by an honest and loving heart. From the fruits of the gospel taking place and working in the soul, Christ gathers in a harvest of honour to himself. Gal 5:22,23 tells us that the Spirit’s presence in us yields fruits of love, joy, peace, kindness, goodness and self-control among others.

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REWARD

There is also the reward of Eternal Life. Those who die in God’s grace and friendship are those who have grown from a seed into a huge tree in this world. They shall be gathered as wheat into God’s barn (Mt 13:30) as corn in its season. Since they are now true reflections of Christ and are perfectly purified, they will live forever with Christ. They are like God forever, for they “see him as he is,” face to face (cf. 1Jn 3:2). This perfect life with the Most Holy Trinity – this communion of life and love with the Trinity, with the Virgin Mary, the angels and all the blessed – is called “heaven.” Heaven is the ultimate end and fulfilment of the deepest human longings, the state of supreme, definitive happiness (CCC #1025).

JOIN THE MOVEMENT

You are called to engage in this process of sowing and reaping through your Christian life. Sow the seed of Christian love in the hearts of others. Each of us can do something loving and loveable for someone else. All we can do is sow seeds of New Life, faith, justice, compassion and love in order to make the world a better place to live. Having done this, you must wait. You cannot force the seed to grow. You can only provide the right conditions for growth.

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GOD’S PREROGATIVE

The task of giving growth is God’s prerogative. He will see to it that selfishness surrenders to sharing, evil gives way to goodness and hate yields to love. Patience, Prayerfulness and Hope are the manure for growth. Tomorrow’s trees come from the shoots we plant today. Tomorrow’s justice and peace begin from the seeds we sow today.

Prayer: Lord, give us grace to dispose ourselves to the action of your grace and work for the salvation of others.

Quick question:

How often do you pray for those you think are straying from the path of righteousness?

Today’s Readings: Ezek 17:22-24; Ps 92:2-3,13-16; 2Cor 5:6-10; Mk 4:26-34

Yours,

BLOGATRON

#42 6 REASONS TO ATTEND MASS

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Dear Doctimus Prime,

I just wanted to tell you about tomorrow.

  1. WHAT’S NEW?

Tomorrow is the celebration of all celebrations. It is the reason we can call ourselves CHRISTIANS. Tomorrow is the celebration that makes us God’s holy and covenant people (cf. 1Pt 2:9). God made man becomes the centrepiece of our Christian worship and life. Tomorrow, we celebrate the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, the Holy Eucharist, Corpus Christi in Latin.

  1. DESCRIPTION

The Eucharist is the sacrament of the true body and blood of Jesus Christ, together with His soul and divinity, under the appearance of bread and wine. This means that at no other time and in no other place is Jesus truly present on earth than in the Eucharist. The Opening Prayer of the Mass gives us a beautiful summary of what Jesus wishes to accomplish in you through the Eucharist by pointing out that:

  • In it, Christ leaves us a remembrance (memorial) of His Passion (death on the Cross for love of us);
  • An opportunity to worship and adore Him in His Real Presence;
  • And experience the fruits of our redemption as often as we approach him in the sacrament.
  1. WORSHIP

Catholic worship exists and thrives because of the Eucharist. The Eucharist is Jesus Himself, in body, blood, soul and divinity, to nourish us in soul and body. Jesus left us this rare and extravagant gift of Himself because he knows that without Him we cannot perform any good or meritorious action (cf. Jn 15:5). It is also interesting that His divine present only appears on the altar during the sacrifice of the Mass, when a Catholic priest says the words that Jesus Himself said at the Last Supper when he took bread and wine and gave thanks. From this sacrament we are also given Jesus, placed in the tabernacle and in the monstrance for us, to worship. All of Catholic worship draws strength and points to the Eucharist as their source and summit. If you wish to offer God a most solemn worship and the highest honour, attend Mass!

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  1. THANKSGIVING

“Eucharistia”, the Greek word from which the English word “Eucharist” is derived, means “Thanksgiving”. This refers to the prayer of Thanksgiving which Jesus offered when he lifted up the bread and wine in prayer at the Last Supper (1Cor 11:23-27). When we come to mass, we come to offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving. This is symbolised in the offering we bring to the altar just before the priest blesses the gifts. Through our offering, we give ourselves to God along with the fruits of our labour. God accepts our offering, blesses us and transforms our gifts into His body and blood and returns it to us in the Eucharist for our spiritual nourishment.

  1. BANQUET

The Eucharist is called a Sacred Banquet because it mirrors the celebration which we shall have in heaven. Jesus told his disciples that he will not drink wine until he drinks it anew in heaven; this is an indication that the Eucharist is a foretaste of the heavenly banquet (Mk 14:25). The best party of all time happens every time you come to mass and admission is absolutely free!

  1. FAMILY

When we gather around the table of the Word and Eucharist, we answer God’s call to make our home with Him. Jesus should be the king of your home and the head of your family. By nourishing us at the table of His Word and Eucharist, he fills us with love for each other. We are no longer to look at each other as strangers but siblings of our one and true Father (Gal 3:28; Col 3:11). Draw strength and inspiration from the Eucharistic table to gather as a family daily in prayer. A Eucharistic family prays together and by praying together they remain together.

You have six reasons to relish every moment at mass tomorrow. God bless!

Yours,

BLOGATRON

#41 DEAR CHRISTIAN

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Dear Doctimus Prime,
I stumbled on this detailed description of Christians dated back to the second century. The author seems to have a clear picture of who Christians are and decided to tell a certain Diognetus about it. This is what he said:
“Christians are indistinguishable from other men either by nationality, language or customs. They do not inhabit separate cities of their own, or speak a strange dialect, or follow some outlandish way of life. Their teaching is not based upon reveries inspired by the curiosity of men. Unlike some other people, they champion no purely human doctrine. With regard to dress, food and manner of life in general, they follow the customs of whatever city they happen to be living in, whether it is Greek or foreign.
  And yet there is something extraordinary about their lives. They live in their own countries as though they were only passing through. They play their full role as citizens, but labour under all the disabilities of aliens. Any country can be their homeland, but for them their homeland, wherever it may be, is a foreign country. Like others, they marry and have children, but they do not expose them. They share their meals, but not their wives. They live in the flesh, but they are not governed by the desires of the flesh. They pass their days upon earth, but they are citizens of heaven. Obedient to the laws, they yet live on a level that transcends the law.
  Christians love all men, but all men persecute them. Condemned because they are not understood, they are put to death, but raised to life again. They live in poverty, but enrich many; they are totally destitute, but possess an abundance of everything. They suffer dishonour, but that is their glory. They are defamed, but vindicated. A blessing is their answer to abuse, deference their response to insult. For the good they do they receive the punishment of malefactors, but even then they rejoice, as though receiving the gift of life. They are attacked by the Jews as aliens, they are persecuted by the Greeks, yet no one can explain the reason for this hatred.

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  To speak in general terms, we may say that the Christian is to the world what the soul is to the body. As the soul is present in every part of the body, while remaining distinct from it, so Christians are found in all the cities of the world, but cannot be identified with the world. As the visible body contains the invisible soul, so Christians are seen living in the world, but their religious life remains unseen. The body hates the soul and wars against it, not because of any injury the soul has done it, but because of the restriction the soul places on its pleasures. Similarly, the world hates the Christians, not because they have done it any wrong, but because they are opposed to its enjoyments.
  Christians love those who hate them just as the soul loves the body and all its members despite the body’s hatred. It is by the soul, enclosed within the body, that the body is held together, and similarly, it is by the Christians, detained in the world as in a prison, that the world is held together. The soul, though immortal, has a mortal dwelling place; and Christians also live for a time amidst perishable things, while awaiting the freedom from change and decay that will be theirs in heaven. As the soul benefits from the deprivation of food and drink, so Christians flourish under persecution. Such is the Christian’s lofty and divinely appointed function, from which he is not permitted to excuse himself.”
This seems like a mirror in which I must assess myself and make changes where necessary.

Yours,
BLOGATRON

#40 LOOK WHAT I FOUND

Dear Doctimus Prime,
You can’t guess what i stumbled on this morning! It is a writing that dates back to the second century. Yes second century. It was written by a Christian convert  who goes by the name JUSTIN. Before becoming a Christian, he was a philosopher. His encounter with Christianity brought him to the conviction that Christianity is the only true philosophy and God is to be worshipped.

Here is a letter he addressed to the Emperor Titus Aelius Antoninus Augustus Pius (86 – 161).

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“No one may share the Eucharist with us unless he believes that what we teach is true, unless he is washed in the regenerating waters of baptism for the remission of his sins, and unless he lives in accordance with the principles given us by Christ.
  We do not consume the eucharistic bread and wine as if it were ordinary food and drink, for we have been taught that as Jesus Christ our Saviour became a man of flesh and blood by the power of the Word of God, so also the food that our flesh and blood assimilates for its nourishment becomes the flesh and blood of the incarnate Jesus by the power of his own words contained in the prayer of thanksgiving.
  The apostles, in their recollections, which are called gospels, handed down to us what Jesus commanded them to do. They tell us that he took bread, gave thanks and said: Do this in memory of me. This is my body. In the same way he took the cup, he gave thanks and said: This is my blood. The Lord gave this command to them alone. Ever since then we have constantly reminded one another of these things. The rich among us help the poor and we are always united. For all that we receive we praise the Creator of the universe through his Son Jesus Christ and through the Holy Spirit.
  On Sunday we have a common assembly of all our members, whether they live in the city or the outlying districts. The recollections of the apostles or the writings of the prophets are read, as long as there is time. When the reader has finished, the president of the assembly speaks to us; he urges everyone to imitate the examples of virtue we have heard in the readings. Then we all stand up together and pray.
  On the conclusion of our prayer, bread and wine and water are brought forward. The president offers prayers and gives thanks to the best of his ability, and the people give assent by saying, “Amen.” The eucharist is distributed, everyone present communicates, and the deacons take it to those who are absent.
  The wealthy, if they wish, may make a contribution, and they themselves decide the amount. The collection is placed in the custody of the president, who uses it to help the orphans and widows and all who for any reason are in distress, whether because they are sick, in prison, or away from home. In a word, he takes care of all who are in need.
  We hold our common assembly on Sunday because it is the first day of the week, the day on which God put darkness and chaos to flight and created the world, and because on that same day our saviour Jesus Christ rose from the dead. For he was crucified on Friday and on Sunday he appeared to his apostles and disciples and taught them the things that we have passed on for your consideration.”
Justin suffered martyrdom for his faith in 164 AD.
BLOGATRON

#39 EASTER FOR YOU

Resurrection

Col 3:2,3 “Let your thoughts be on heavenly things not on the things that are on the earth…your life has been hidden with Christ in God.”

Today, we celebrate the GREATEST mystery of our Christian faith: JESUS CHRIST IN ALIVE! He truly died, he was not resuscitated, he rose from death and death no longer has any power over him. There are some things Easter should mean to you as a Christian:

#1 REUNION WITH GOD: Through Adam’s disobedience, humanity was separated from God’s love. We all have a brokenness that prevents us from doing good even if we wanted to. Through the resurrection of Christ, we have received grace in baptism to be introduced into the life of God (Rom 8:1; Jn 14:23).

#2 FREEDOM FROM SIN: By our sins, we incur spiritual death. This death is eternal separation from God who is the source of eternal life (Jn 14:6). Through his death and resurrection, Jesus frees you from sin and makes you an heir to God’s kingdom (Jn 1:12; 3:16).

#3 FREEDOM FROM FEAR: A child enjoys rights and privileges in his home but a slave is ruled by fear. Through our sins, we have lost the courage to call God our Father. This right is restored to you when you accept Christ as Lord of your life and reject the devil (Rom 8:15,16).

#4 CHANGE OF MENTALITY: In baptism, we are united with Christ in his death and resurrection from where be begin a process of transformation. In Christ, we are transformed and renewed in our minds and heart so that we know and love God above all things. In your transformation, you begin to see others as created in God’s image, and to do everything from a pure love of God.

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#5 CHANGE OF LIFESTYLE: For the baptised Christian, his or her life and faith are one and the same. Every moral or civil action you perform is burdened with responsibility. A sign that you have become truly Christian is that you weigh your actions in line with your faith in Christ and won’t act unless you have prayed. Through your actions, people should be able to tell that you are truly Christ-like.

#6 GRACE TO LOVE: Through the power of the resurrection, we are strengthened to love even our enemies. Christ’s resurrection fills our heart with so much grace that we see people first as subjects to be loved and not objects to use.

#7 GRACE TO FORGIVE: A big lesson from Christ’s death and resurrection is his spirit of forgiveness, even for those who killed him. Forgiveness will transform our society if we acknowledge that everyone deserves another chance.

Prayer: Lord, bring us to a deeper realisation of your love for us and our need to love others in the same way.

Today’s Readings: Acts 10:34,37-43; Ps 117:1-216-17,22-23; Col 3:1-4; Jn 20:1-9

Yours,

BLOGATRON

#38 THE MOTHER OF ALL VIGILS

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Dear Doctimus Prime,

It is Holy Saturday and tonight will be the vigil of Jesus’ resurrection. Tonight is the mother of all vigils. People claim that the Catholic Church does not read the Bible (or Sacred Scriptures as I love to call it). But tonight alone, we shall have 9 readings from the Old and New Testaments, not counting the Psalms after every passage, all outlining a beautiful summary of our relationship with God that has culminated in the coming of Christ. We are shown how in times past God who created and sustains the world, continues to lead us by the hand through time to the fullness of salvation in Himself, through His Son, Jesus Christ

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A SUMMARY OF THE READINGS

#1 Gen 1:1-2:2, We see that that God is the source of the created order, and humans are at the pinnacle of creation. He has given us control and responsibility over creation because we bear his image and likeness.

#2 In Gen 22:1-18, We learn how Abraham’s obedience to God became the source of everlasting blessing for his descendants yet to come. Faithfulness to God brings fruitfulness from God.

#3 In Ex 14:15-15:1, The Israelites see the awesome power of God as he delivers them from their pursuers, the Egyptians. God’s presence is never far from those who put their faith and trust in him.

#4 In Isa 54:5-14, we see God reconciling his people to Himself, restoring to them his “covenant of peace”, after they had been exiled from their land. Do you listen to God’s call when he seeks to pull you from your waywardness and slavery to sin?

#5 Isa 55:1-11 puts God’s call to us in the context of a covenant. God doesn’t want to lord it over you, he wants to enter into a relationship with you. This relationship is to be built on righteousness, mercy and love. Sin has no place in this union between you and God.

easter vigil

#6 Baruch 3:9-15,32-4:4 described God’s Word as the “fountain of Wisdom” from which you must drink. Every relationship is nourished by fruitful communication. Your relationship with God is the most important and, therefore, stands most in need of the nourishment which only God’s word can give.

#7 In Ezekiel 36:16-28, God promises to bring Israel back from exile. They had gone into exile because they failed to listen to his words or communicate with him. Even now God takes the initiative, as always, to call them back to himself. He promises the cleansing of water, a new heart and a new spirit. In baptism, you were given all three. Tonight, you will renew that promise and be reenergized in your love relationship with God.

#8 Paul’s letter to the Romans 6:3-11 tells us that baptism is our death to our old life of sin and our rebirth in the life of Christ’s resurrection. We have nailed our old ways to the Cross of Christ, and received grace to live in holiness all the days of our life.

#9 The Gospel (Mk 16:1-7) The women, just like Jesus’ Apostles, were not expecting Him to rise from the dead. They witnessed and received news of great consolation which reassures them of God’s power at work in Christ. We desperately need the reassurance of Christ’s presence in our world. He is victorious over death; he will raise our fallen world to life through us.

May the glory of Christ’s resurrection fill our world with peace and blessings.

Yours,

BLOGATRON