Andrej_Rublëv_001

God Is Love

God is a Family. God is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. They are co-equal and co-eternal. God is a Communion of Persons, a Communion of Love. Father loves the Son and the Son receives the love of the Father and in return loves the Father. This Love that they share is the Divine Person of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Trinity in complete and blessed happiness enjoyed the gift of their relationship with one another so much between the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, that the Three in One desired to pour out their love upon Creation and into each one of us so that you too could share in God's blessed happiness and in God's communion of love forever.

4ceilin2 copy

God Has A Plan For You

God created you out of love so that you could share in His communion of love in His Family in the Trinity. He created you in His image and likeness and gave you the ability to think, reflect, and to know and love Him. He created you for goodness and for love. He created you for relationship with Himself and with others.

"You have made us for yourself O God, and our hearts are restless, until they rest in You."

~ St. Augustine

“For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for your welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11)

04_3ce4b

Sin Effected God's Plan

God desired our good. He is the Source of all Life and Goodness. But we were tempted to doubt our Father's goodness. We believed that if we wanted to be happy, we had to seek it for ourselves rather than trust in God and His ways. We do not like being told what to do, but believe we can find and make our own happiness. We disobeyed God and chose sin over Him. By doing this, we cut ourselves off from the Source of Life and Goodness. We hurt our relationship with God, ourselves, others, and Creation. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23).

michelangelo_caravaggio_64_saint_jerome_writing

Sin Leads to Death

Through sin, we cut ourselves off from the Source of Life and Goodness. We then experience the pain of death.

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23)

"It is in the face of death that the riddle of human existence grows most acute. Not only is man tormented by pain and by the advancing deterioration of his body, but even more so by a dread of perpetual extinction. He rightly follows the intuition of his heart when he abhors and repudiates the utter ruin and total disappearance of his own person. He rebels against death because he bears in himself an eternal seed which cannot be reduced to sheer matter. All the endeavors of technology, though useful in the extreme, cannot calm his anxiety; for prolongation of biological life is unable to satisfy that desire for higher life which is inescapably lodged in his breast" (Gaudium Et Spes, 18).

CaravaggioOpferungIsaaksUffizien

God Called and Chose People to Fulfill His Plan

Though we fell into sin, God never turned His back on us. As soon as we fell into sin, immediately God went looking for us asking, "Where are you?" (Genesis 3:9). God did not leave us in our sin but chose certain men and women throughout human history to give us a promise of hope and universal blessing. He called Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebekah, Jacob, Moses, Joshua, David, Solomon, and the prophets to form His own people in order to teach them His ways and prepare them for the gift of His Son.

nativity3

God Sent His Son

Because man could not fully accept the message of hope that He gave to the prophets and those who came before them, God sent His Son to become flesh and dwell among us. Jesus Christ is true God and true man and He was born of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He became like us in all things, but sin. In order to show us how to become more like God, God became man.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him might not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16).

1409grec

Jesus Taught Us How to Live

Jesus taught us to love God with our whole heart, mind, soul, and strength and He taught us to love our neighbor as ourselves. He taught us through His words and through His deeds. He performed miracles to show us that He had authority and to show us His identity as the Son of God. He calls us to drop our nets and to follow Him as His disciples, imitating His way of life, and becoming more like Him.

feature longdecker_Perugino_Christ_handing_keyes_to_st_peter

Jesus Founded a Church

He founded the Church to be the "pillar and bulwark of truth" (1 Timothy 3:15). He promised that He would give His Church the "Spirit of truth" to lead the Church into "all the truth" (John 16:13). He consecrated His Apostles in the truth (John 17:17) so that they could be the foundation on which the Church was built (Ephesians 2:20). He gave a special authority to Peter, the Apostle to bind and loose and to be the source of unity for the rest of the Apostles. He founded His Church to carry out His mission throughout the rest of the world.

"You are Peter and upon this Rock, I will build my Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven. Whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven" (Matthew 16:18-19).

Sacraments

Because we sin in and through our bodies we experience the separation of our bodies from our souls in death. Jesus wanted to conquer sin and death and reunite our souls and bodies, and so Jesus instituted sacraments so that through our bodies we could receive the gift of eternal life through physical signs and the redemption of our bodies. Jesus wants us to be united to Him in His Body, which is the Church. And so He instituted seven sacraments by which we become members of His Body and receive the gift of eternal life and members of the Church.

“Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38).

"Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life within you" (John 6:53).

A 4158

He Died For Our Sins

In order to destroy sin and death, Jesus took upon Himself all the sins of the world and died. He was suffered, crucified, and was buried. He did this for you and for me.

"He was delivered over to death for our trespasses" (Romans 4:25).

vaticanmuseumtheresurrectionofjesustapestry

Jesus is Risen

"For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures... Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive" (1 Corinthians 15:3-4, 20-22).

"For God has called man and still calls him so that with his entire being he might be joined to Him in an endless sharing of a divine life beyond all corruption. Christ won this victory when He rose to life, for by His death He freed man from death. Hence to every thoughtful man a solidly established faith provides the answer to his anxiety about what the future holds for him. At the same time faith gives him the power to be united in Christ with his loved ones who have already been snatched away by death; faith arouses the hope that they have found true life with God" (Gaudium Et Spes, 18).

Great-Commission

Jesus Sent Us to Make Disciples

Jesus, before He ascended to the Father, sent out His Apostles and disciples throughout the world to invite all peoples into a relationship with Him as His disciples and to invite them to become members of His Body, which is the Church in order to receive the gift of His divine life in communion with the Father in the Holy Spirit.

"All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you" (Matthew 28:18-20).

To be a disciple of Jesus Christ means that we are under divine mandate to make other disciples of Jesus Christ. If we truly understand the blessed gift we have received in knowing Jesus, we will want to share the Good News with others.

pentecost27.jpg

Jesus Sent His Spirit

Just as the Body of Christ was formed in the womb of the Virgin Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit at her Annunciation, so too the Body of Christ, the Church, was formed in the presence of the Virgin Mary at Pentecost by the power of the Holy Spirit. She is both mother of Jesus and mother of the Church. Jesus gave the Church His Holy Spirit to help you live the divine life and to follow His commandments. By the gift of Spirit given to us in Baptism we become children of the Father and have the ability to live a new life in the Spirit as His new creation.

"God has raised this Jesus to life, to which we are all witnesses. Exalted, then, to the right hand of God, He has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear" (Acts 2:33).

"For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery that returns you to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship, by whom we cry, 'Abba! Father!'" (Romans 8:14-15).

holyfamily

Vocation to Holiness

We were given the Holy Spirit to live a life of divine love in communion with God and in communion with one another. We are called to love one another as Christ loved us and to transform the world through our love, service to those in need, family life, relationships, witness, and  the work that we do as we invite others to become disciples of Jesus Christ. This is the universal call to holiness. We are called to put our gifts and talents at the service of others and to make a gift of ourselves in love through our unique vocation and state of life.

Some are called to marriage and family life, some are called to priesthood, some are called to religious life, some are called to celibate chastity, but whatever our calling, we are called to become holy and to imitate Jesus Christ.

We are called to build up the kingdom of God here on earth by making a gif of ourselves in love to others in order to bring Gospels values into all aspects of human life in order to prepare for the coming of Jesus Christ when the new heavens and new earth will be established. It is the Spirit of God which allows us to accomplish this mission.

1lastjud

He Will Come Again

Jesus will come again to judge the living and the dead. The bodies of the dead will rise and be reunited with their souls. What was separated by sin and death, Jesus will reunite through the power of His Resurrection. Jesus will establish the new heavens and the new earth. The Marriage Feast of the Lamb is celebrated when Jesus is united to His Bride, the Church. Jesus will bring about true justice, righting every wrong, and giving each person according to their deeds. Those who closed themselves off to the Source of Love and Life will experience the eternal pain of separation from God and others in hell, and all people who have faithfully followed Our Lord will receive their joyous reward according to their faith and deeds and see God face to face. He will be All in All. And we will enjoy the blessed happiness of the inner life of the Trinity being in perfect union with God and neighbor.

"Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man, and He will live with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the former things have passed away. And the One seated on the throne said, 'Behold, I make all things new.'" (Revelation 21:3-5).