The Good News

Welcome to The Good News Blogspot! The Good News is real and alive in my own life. Jesus has fulfilled in my life His promise of fuller and more abundant life (John 15), a quality of life I could not have created for myself. I invite you to share experiences with me so we can all grow into the life He offers us all.

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Catholic by call, Jesuit by nature, a preacher/spiritual conversation partner by choice. Learning about getting older, learning to live in the present moment, one day at a time. Learning to let go and laugh.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Is There Anything Out There to Believe In?

If “religion” is the mode by which humans engage God and so begin to know something of the divine life, of moral human life, of human happiness, and so on, then the big question is, Is there someone out there with whom to engage?

A philosophical camp, called anti-realism, thinks that God’s existence is located in a community’s belief that God exists. Belief creates existence. Believers believe God exists, therefore God exists, because in the hearts and minds of believers God exists.

Conversely, Roman Catholicism believes that God actually exists as the Divine Creator, the Triune God, the Mysterium Tremendum et Fascinans. God is really “out there” and, perhaps more importantly, God is “in here,” in believers’ hearts, in the concrete reality of our lives, and in the midst of the community gathered in prayer. The Catholic teachings on the Incarnation, the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, the healing and transformative power of the sacraments, the authority of the ministerial priesthood, and the royal priesthood of all believers are grounded in the reality of God’s existence. And these teachings become a reality in time and space through God’s actual authority, power, and activity in Creation.

Moreover, the great saints go before us as exemplars to show that we can experience God in our lives. St Ignatius of Loyola records in his Autobiography that he came to know the reality of God through experiences of consolation during his convalescence at Loyola and in the subsequent months just outside Manresa. This consolation Ignatius felt – the experience of being “inflamed with love of (his) Creator and Lord…,” of feeling “all interior joy that invites and attracts to what is heavenly…by filling (the soul) with peace and quiet in its Creator and Lord” – was God’s dynamic self-revelation (Spiritual Exercises, 316). In fact, Ignatius modeled the pattern and flow of the Exercises on these experiences. In the same way my own conversion came in an experience of consolation in prayer. (See the posting “Why I Am Catholic,” October 18, 2006).

This revelation is Trinitarian: Christ present in the power of the Holy Spirit revealing the Father as love. This revelation gives rise to consolation in daily life and leads us to the fuller and more abundant life that only God – a God who really exists “out there” and “in here” – can give, a God of the living and the dead.

2 Comments:

Blogger Kiwi Nomad 2006 said...

Thanks for showing me the way to your blog... there seems like lots to reflect on here.

1:09 PM  
Blogger Fred Sturgeon said...

I wonder why the Church has not officially made the Trinity a dogma? (ex Cathedra) Some Christian churches do not believe in the Trinity. Your paper was excellent.

12:08 PM  

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