Tag Archives: St John Paul II

The encounter that changes everything

It seems to me that we need a renewed orientation in our spiritual, intellectual and apostolic lives, a renewed orientation that exists in Christ Jesus squarely and firmly. John Paul II told the youth at Toronto:

Our personal encounter with Christ bathes life in new light, sets us on the right path, and sends us out to be his witnesses. This new way of looking at the world and at people, which comes to us from him, leads us more deeply into the mystery of faith, which is not just a collection of theoretical assertions to be accepted and approved by the mind, but an experience to be had, a truth to be lived, the salt and light of all reality (cf. Veritatis Splendor, 88).

Excerpt, Message of the Holy Father to the Youth of the World on the Occassion of the 17th World Youth Day, Toronto, 18-28 July 2002

St John Paul II –look to the Lord

Our time invites us, pushes us, obligates us to look to the Lord, and to plunge into a humble and devout meditation on the mystery of the supreme power of Christ himself.

He who was born of the Virgin Mary, the so-called son of the carpenter, the Son of the living God, as Peter confessed, came to make all of us “a kingdom of priests.”

The Second Vatican Council has reminded us of the mystery of this power, and of the fact that the mission of Christ—Priest, Teaching Prophet, King—continues in the Church. Everyone, the whole people of God has a part in this threefold mission. Perhaps in the past, we put the triple crown on the head of the Pope to express by such a symbol that the whole hierarchical order of the Church of Christ, all of Christ’s “sacred power” exercised in the Church, is nothing else but service, service that has one goal alone: that the whole People of God take part in this threefold mission of Christ, and remain always under the Lord’s power. His power comes not from the powers of this world, but from the heavenly Father and from the mystery of the Cross and of the Resurrection.

The absolute power of the Lord is even sweet and gentle. So, it answers all the depths of man; it answers his highest aspirations of intellect, of will, of heart. His power does not speak with a language of force, but it expresses itself in charity and in truth.

Homily at the beginning of the ministry of John Paul II as the Roman Pontiff, 1978
The image of the young John Paul as a student at the Angelicum, 1947

The Cross of Jesus defines our life

Jesus’ death on the cross was a sacrifice of expiation; it makes us understand both the gravity of sin as a rebellion against God and a rejection of his love, and the marvelous saving work of Christ which was offered humanity and which has restored us to grace and therefore to participation in God’s Trinitarian life and to the inheritance of eternal happiness.

Jesus’ passion and death on the cross give us the true and definitive meaning of life where the redemption is already realized in the perspective of eternity. Just as Christ is risen, so too we will rise in glory, if we have accepted his message and mission.

Saint Pope John Paul II
General Audience, March 1, 1989

Saints in communion

Sts John Paul and Teresa

Today, Pope Francis proclaimed Mother Teresa of Calcutta a saint.

“Let us conquer the world with our love. Let’s us interweave our lives with bonds of sacrifice and love, and it will be possible for us too conquer the world.”

“we can do no great things – only small things with great love”

St. Teresa of Calcutta, pray for us

The Eucharist in the now, and transcends time

The Eucharist is indelibly marked by the event of the Lord’s passion and death, of which it is not only a reminder but the sacramental re-presentation. It is the sacrifice of the Cross perpetuated down the ages.

The Church has received the Eucharist from Christ her Lord not as one gift – however precious – among so many others, but as the gift par excellence, for it is the gift of himself, of his person in his sacred humanity, as well as the gift of his saving work.

Nor does it remain confined to the past, since “all that Christ is – all that he did and suffered for all men – participates in the divine eternity, and so transcends all times”.

When the Church celebrates the Eucharist, the memorial of her Lord’s death and resurrection, this central event of salvation becomes really present and “the work of our redemption is carried out”

—EE 11

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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