Christ: Our Hope amidst Fear

I posted in Being Frank today under a post called Living under the pall of fear, which talks about the growing fear in the world, particularly recently in the UK, with dangers and hostilities creeping up seemingly from every corner in the form of wars and terrorists. The author suggests, “Maybe one way to start is to accept that a culture of fear does predominate the media, at least, and to really speak out and up with the hope that Christ gives us.” I agreed. Here is what I posted:

I’d just like to quote from John Paul II’s Crossing the Threshold of Hope:

“The Gospel, above all else, is the joy of creation. God, who in creating saw that His creation was good (cf. Gn 1:1-25), is the source of joy for all creatures, and above all for humankind. God the Creator seems to say of all creation: “It is good that you exist.” And His joy spreads especially through the “good news,” according to which good is greater than all that is evil in the world. Evil, in fact, is neither fundamental nor definitive. This point clearly distinguishes Christianity from all forms of existential pessimism.

Creation was given and entrusted to humankind as a duty, representing not a source of suffering but the foundation of a creative existence in the world. A person who believes in the essential goodness of all creation is capable of discovering all the secrets of creation, in order to perfect continually the work assigned to him by God. It must be clear for those who accept Revelation, and in particular the Gospel, that it is better to exist than not to exist. And because of this, in the realm of the Gospel, there is no space for any nirvana, apathy, or resignation. Instead, there is a great challenge to perfect creation-be it oneself, be it the world.”

I just find that to be so beautiful, so insightful, so true, all the more because I have in the past fallen into that “existential pessimism” he talks about, which could so easily envelop those who are confronted by the evils of this world – I know I was far from being the only one!

To know that human beings have intrinsic dignity and value, that evil and suffering can be overcome, that love (of all forms) is our true desire and our goal; these allow us to live in hope, with a purpose that invigorates, and give us the courage and strength needed to “perfect creation”, as he says, by being determined to bring the world to the sanctity, true love and joy intended by God.

I don’t know of any other “gospel” which could offer this hope, and the world is dying (quite literally) to hear it. In this sense, Catholics have a great duty – indeed a great commission, our privilege and pleasure – to bring the world to Christ and His Church.

Mary, Star of the Sea, lead us all to the safe harbour in Christ!

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