This is what we mean in speaking of His love as self-effusive. He said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, And naked I shall return there. Prayers for you in your journey. Always take away something positive. Your intentions are from your heart. Suffering is like childbirth or sunlight. When did this become a practice? You do have faith and whatever you do as a Christian make sure you are doing it for the right reason and not because you are a Christian. That is not because He is indigent and weak, but rather because He has so willed it for the greater glory of His spotless Spouse. So, that is why the early Christians honored the relics of the saints, because they understood Christian anthropology, the communion of the saints, and the implications of the doctrine of the resurrection. I have watched many videos by Ven. This has often been something even non-Christians have respected and admired about Christianity:  it offers us real lessons on how to deal with life once the pleasure cruise inevitably stops. Suffering is not directly related to sin today. Why did the early Christians rejoicing in their suffering? This is not complicated to understand nor should it be. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? Therefore since the human mind is hemmed in by the thick fog of its uncertainty among the divine judgments, when holy people se the prosperity of this world coming to them, they are troubled with a frightening suspicion. Only from the stance of humble trust does the possibility of its meaning come into our field of vision. Thank you for this excellent resource!!! It is very helpful in ministry!!! As Roman Catholics, we at CTC believe what the Church teaches about suffering, including that suffering is a profound entering into the suffering of Christ (Col 1) which in some mysterious way contributes to the salvation of the one suffering and the world itself. For they are afraid that they might receive the fruits of their labors here; they are afraid that divine justice detects a secret wound in them and, heaping external rewards on them, drives them away from internal ones. As Adam shrank from the prospect of suffering and death and ultimately said “No” to God, Jesus, the new Adam said “Yes” and suffered and died. What do we learn here? This is the same objection we find in “the new atheism.” The atheist directs us to observe all the evil and suffering around us. Because we are joined to Him, as members of His Body. And invite you to stick around for better answers in the future, when we get to those articles. Because we are joined to Christ, our suffering is joined with His, and participates in the Redemption He accomplished. First, because the person of Jesus Christ is represented by the Supreme Pontiff, who in turn must call on others to share much of his solicitude lest he be overwhelmed by the burden of his pastoral office, and must be helped daily by the prayers of the Church. This present life is for us a period of testing, to determine where we shall be for eternity, either with God or separated from God. Since I know you do not affirm penal substitutionary atonement, what do you mean by “took on himself”? They are complete only when united as one substance, i.e. We recognize that our loving Father has some good reason for disciplining us, even when we cannot see what it is. There is no explanation. I have to grow enough or hear from the Lord or obey something or do something or believe something or speak something or pray something for the answer the come. My suffering is not that of Christ’s salvific suffering for the world (I am not God, obviously! Sometimes we have to step away and take a long look. Just style, I guess, but it sounds harsh to me. SUFFERING IN SCHILLEBEECKX 479 EXPERIENTIAL CONTEXT OF SCHILLEBEECKX'S THEOLOGY Schillebeeckx's writing is marked by his engagement with history, with varied philosophical disciplines, and with his own The great Christian thinker Tertullian reflects on this mystery in his work On the Resurrection of the Flesh: Come, tell me what is your opinion of the flesh, when it has to contend for the name of Christ, dragged out to public view, and exposed to the hatred of all men; when it pines in prisons under the cruelest privation of light, in banishment from the world, amidst squalor, filth, and noisome food, without freedom even in sleep, for it is bound on its very pallet and mangled in its bed of straw; when at length before the public view it is racked by every kind of torture that can be devised, and when finally it is spent beneath its agonies, struggling to render its last turn for Christ by dying for Him— upon His own cross many times, not to say by still more atrocious devices of torment. I appreciate the effort and intention (as I understand it) of CTC. God is treating you as sons. At Gethsemane, Jesus was anxious and fearful as He knew He was about to suffer for humanity. But because of the body-soul relation, both ontological and eschatological, to draw near to his body is to draw near to the saint. All the angels and saints presently enjoy the Beatific Vision. By our union with Christ, our suffering gets to count, as a participation in His suffering; our suffering becomes meaningful in the realm of eternity. Welcome. “Or do you suppose that those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them were worse culprits than all the men who live in Jerusalem? However, as a witness to others’ suffering, or plumbing the real reasons for it, I go with you, GNW, I can be with the mystery. Modern society (and indeed most of contemporary Christianity) goes to great lengths to try to get us to ignore this message. Saturday, March 24, 2012. God did not come up with a plan B when Adam and Eve committed original sin. I was just listening today to a homily which mentions JPII’s encyclical on suffering which he wrote immediately after the assassination attempt. This doesn’t mean that there aren’t some atheists who go around trying to disprove the existence of God, but in general atheists neither need nor seek such evidence because they recognize that it is a false pursuit. To stand before the body of a saint is to stand before a part of someone who is presently enjoying the Beatific Vision, and is presently related (by an ontological relation of identity and an eschatological relation) to this body; it is to stand before something that we know (by the authority of the Church) will be in heaven forever. Suffering for Christ, in this present life, is a great honor, when seen from the divine perspective. Kevin Tierney is the Associate Editor of the Learn and Live the Faith Section at Catholic Lane. Why did Jesus have to suffer on the cross? We are priests of God by our baptism.54 We are not ministerial priests, who offer up the sacrifice of Christ upon the altar at holy Mass. (Hebrews 12:5-11). If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. iii). I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.35. Anyhow, you guys are a welcome help to my journey and I hope my input contributes to yours as well. You are a blessing from above. Read Matthew 14:22-33. I am unspeakably grateful for that fact. Any theology is informed by experience and yet suffering is surprisingly one of our weakest theologies. Jesus could not possibly be separated from God, because He is God. (Genesis 3:8)  If they can’t hide forever, they often turn to despair in seeking death like Cain. I hope that clarifies what I was and wasn’t saying. . I saw his picture, he was a handsome lad. And there are many more examples that could be given. Cf. If that saint’s body had no relation to the saint’s soul, then drawing near to his body would not in any way draw us near to the saint. theology of the body. Why is suffering important to us as Christians? It is an ontological relation (i.e. The New Testament authors teach this same thing. The denial of the practice of venerating the relics of the saints, and denying their ability to hear our prayers was part of the heresy introduced by Eunomius and followed by Vigilantius in the fourth century, as St. Jerome tells us in his work against Vigilantius: Does the bishop of Rome do wrong when he offers sacrifices to the Lord over the venerable bones of the dead men Peter and Paul, as we should say, but according to you, over a worthless bit of dust, and judges their tombs worthy to be Christ’s altars? Her ignorant Protestant faith (yes, very ignorant–low church pentecostal) is precious to me. As you know, our prayers are not answered as we like,nor in the time we want. By manfully resisting our disordered lower appetites, out of love for God, we merit a greater reward than would those without concupiscence. I have lost everything and it does not matter. Hello Jared. Your understanding in suffering is amazing. We all understand( I hope) that the Gospels were written by 4 separate people, at least, in four separate communities who saw Jesus through a somewhat different lens. For the Christian, says St. Gregory, one should be more concerned when things go well here, than when one faces suffering and loss and trials. Skeptics and critics go so far as to call it “mythmaking” but a more reasonable interpretation is that,just like when we tell a story of a deceased loved one or friend to comfort another, we talk about how wonderful they were, not any of their weaknesses. Some of the greatest messages that I have ever heard on suffering were from my Reformed Baptist pastor. According to the Church, the great cancer is sin, and it leads to hell, i.e. If you find that my suspicions are ill founded, I’d be happy to hear that your experience is to the contrary. Moreover as our Savior does not rule the Church directly in a visible manner, He wills to be helped by the members of His Body in carrying out the work of redemption. The question of suffering, for me, goes to the root of everything about God and creation. They wait patiently to be reunited to their bodies, at the resurrection. Hindus, like Catholics, practice vows (like a vow of celibacy, or fasting) that can create discomfort and suffering. She suffers even now, and I am amazed at the redemptive power of that suffering both in her life and in others (despite them not being aware of it). … Wherefore, though good and bad men suffer alike, we must not suppose that there is no difference between the men themselves, because there is no difference in what they both suffer. Suffering is not in itself virtuous, nor is it a sign of holiness. And this is why the atheist cannot see it. Even try reading “God is Read” stories of Christians in China by Liao Yiwu. And this is the Catholic perspective, that when we suffer, our suffering is an opportunity both to grow in our faith and love for God, but also to honor and glorify God, by loving Him in the midst of our sufferings, and so storing up an incomparable reward in the life to come. I surrendered it to God and asked him to handle it until I can. I don’t know how the Church interprets this text, but what then does it mean when Christ says, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”(Mat 27:46), if not that he was forsaken by the Father at one point in time (i.e. So far, I must admit, I find the Catholic point of view quite compelling. No, Christ’s work was sufficient for its purpose. So, athests can and do rejoice in the gifts that flow from suffering. I even wonder if I really know what grace is. 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