At the beginning of this year, aka August 21st. Myself and three other guys started the pre-novitate in PortChester NY. Now during December we have been keep excellently busy. Not only do we have classes that we attend 4 week days, but we have about eight ministries. Starting with teaching Religious education, then going to tutoring and attendance at youth centers. Not only do we have various formative experiences, but we also have our main focus in play too. With human development we learn more ourself as persons and as men. It is a beautiful experience and focus, one that I am eternally grateful for and is an irreplaceable time.
On another note, as we are now during the season of advent we remember not only the birth of our lord and savior, but we also prepare and anticipate the new coming of Christ. Why is it that during this season people tend to be more joyous and kindly, is it due to the season, or is it because of tradition and family? That surely may be a part of it, but there is another part less spoken of, if spoken of at all. Yes you have the birth of Christ, which is one of, if not the single greatest thing that has happened to human kind. Yes we were created, and by right that should be the greatest, but by our sin we should have wiped out that good, but God has so loved us that he has come down as a child, our child, so as to save us. What more could we ask, but that the lord and Christ would free us from our sins? More than that, he promised that he would be with us forever, to strengthen us and guide us. Once it is all said and done, he would then come again, to bring all to himself, so as long as they accept him.
Now, as we are speaking of newness and heaven, what is it like? Well, in a way we do not know, nor can we fully as we are alive. "For no eye has seen nor ear heard what God has prepared for those who love him." The church states that we do not fully know what is in store for us in heaven. Yes that may be undefined, but where is the interest in a mystery that has already been solved. How would any good author expect their material to be read if they revealed all in their first page? So no, we do not fully know what is in store for us, but what we do know is that it is God's home. The very same God who fashioned the heavens and earth out of nothing, and the very same who breathed his spirit into clay, so as to make his image. We do not know, but I say, why do we need to? God promises himself, which is beyond all things. So be hopeful and expectant this advent season, for God has prepared for you the heavens, from the foundations of the world.
Monday, March 25, 2013
I think all of us in Formation, regardless of the opinions, could agree on one thing. Formation changes you, it forces responsibility, or an accountability toward what is needed to be done. Either way, none of us could ever imagine the hilarious nature we would grow into. Here are several
1. Being happy you can go to bed early (10:30)
2. Being happy you can sleep in (7:30)
3. Joyous over the Lenten penance, because you can still eat popcorn and watch a movie
4. Finding that you have all your work done, so you take a 15 minute nap
5. Intentionally bumping into, or messing with confrere
What I also found funny, is the random things we do. Normally a person my age would have huge plans for the weekend, not me! My plans are frequent.
1. Go to youth center
2. Get my hair cut(Or in some cases some give the hair cut)
3. Watch a movie at home
5. Go to bed early
6. Attend an adoration an hour plus away
7. Do my chore well
8. Clean/Organize my room
Either way, I have learned that though the big things are what are needed to be done, it is the ordinary little things which form or attend to the result of the big things. As in you can run a youth center with nearly no flaws, having everyone behave, but in the end the kids feel a lacking. Or you can have the kids clean up before and after, and maybe have them help in an important job. The difference, though small, has an impact which can affect the young person for the rest of their life. It changes from, this is the place I hang out, to this is my home, which I have fun at and help others.
Finally, It is always funny to us in formation, that we could never imagine what would happen to us. Through it all, the hard times, the sick times. And the times you want to throw up your hands and start to sing the smerf song. But somehow God always gets us through each obstacle, and I dare say do come out better. Either way, community is very much like marriage. The only difference is your celibate and the kids usually go home after a while(Unless you’re at boarding school, it then takes a lot longer) But for us, we are very concerned with everyone’s salvation. Not just the youth we serve, but we are equally concerned with the salvation of our brothers. Because In the end it is not how many kids we minister to, but how strong our relationship with Christ is. Because you can be the most gifted youth minister, but without Christ you are ministering to no goal.
Sunday, March 10, 2013
The Burning Society
Today in our society many of people are led by the society, instead of the society assisting the peoples. It has focused not on the people, and most certainly not on marriage, but instead it is focused on the societal norms. One quote from my favorite authors brings this to mind. “A dead thing can only go with the current, but a living thing can go against the current.” This quote is from G.K Chesterton, and helps me to remember what I must do, and who I must follow. Either-way the society will burn, it will either burn to the ground, or it will burn with love of God. So it is up to us to either help destroy our society, and in turn destroy ourselves, or help build the society in Christ, and in turn help build ourselves. This is our choice, what will you decide to choose?
Saturday, February 9, 2013
Tuesday, February 5, 2013
There is much conflict over what truth is, many people will try to take the relativist route, which states. “It is right for me, but not maybe for him.” This is illogical and self-contradictory. It is illogical because you jump from the concept of truth, which in itself must be universal, to an individual. By the very act of affirming that truth is relative, you therefore contradict yourself. Because you are moving from an individual statement, to an affirmative universal, I.E “That is correct” Moreover, by being a skeptic in who denies all absolutes you absolutely deny yourself. This then means that you contradict yourself and so acknowledge truth. So partially putting aside the philosophical words, I will change gears. Man is an empty vessel which is only capable of being filled by truth. We can only be filled by truth, nothing else satisfies, or is accepted. If there is no truth, all becomes ridiculous and not capable of being learned. So luckily for us, God is truth. All truth flows from him, in which pours into us. The only reason why we can be filled with false truths, are by the fact that we understand them to be truths, yet while they are merely a shadow of the real truth.
That was a taste of the philosophy we must learn. If it is complex that is fine, it can be difficult to understand. However, the truth resounds nevertheless. Essentially what I was saying is this, truth is. And no matter how we try to get around it, if we say that we “prove” there are no universal truths, a person doesn’t prove anything, but that truth is. So since God is truth, we must try to fill our hearts, souls, and mind with God. For else we will fail and be filled with the things of this world.
Thursday, January 31, 2013
We all desire this, each and every person searches for their meaning, consciously or subconsciously. It is where our belief, our desire, and our entirety rest. It is in that meaning of life, that we find our “true self” However, the means to this end, is hotly disputed. Some say that riches alone will suffice, others say pleasure. I say goodness and happiness in the Lord is that, which everyone desires, it is the reason for awaking, the reason for eating, and the reason for your very existence. How can I prove this? Well, it is like falling in love, first you start being compelled to learn as much as you can, then while you are mesmerized you drop into an utter fascination. You cannot go without a second of thinking of your desire; soon they become your love. This love, I tell you, is your first and ultimate love, far beyond marriage or any simple vocation. We are first called to love God beyond all that is, how this is proven, but in our pursuit of love, and of fulfillment. The reason why there is discontent and unhappiness is not because people are broken, but that people search for their meaning in things that are mortal. All of this physical world we see will pass away, and yet we try to convince ourselves that we are currently immortal.How I personally know that God has to be our meaning is not just faith, and yet that makes up a lot of the reason. But I can know this by logic and philosophy. We all know that we search for goodness, our feeling of acceptance or fulfillment. So then, is it not also apparent that when we keep searching, we remain living proof that we have not found our meaning? This then rests in one fact, that God alone must be our fulfillment. However, we tend to edge away from that idea, because it will demand of us, it will force us to give God something we are not good at giving. It will force us to give of ourselves; essentially, it will make us sacrifice our pride in our self to attain the goal. It is in fact the hardest thing we can do, because in it we will be most inconsistent. Regardless of how hard, what journey is complete without hardships and some horrors along the way? Even though we naturally love the stories about epic heroes who conquered all adversaries, and in the end attain their life’s goal. Those are the stories that bring a tear and an inspiration for our own journeys. So my challenge for you is this, follow Christ Jesus. Give until it hurts, for in that sacrifice and patient sorrow you will learn what true love means, and what the meaning of life is.