Tuesday in Passion Week – 5 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘ … We are living here now, as aliens …’

Tuesday in Passion Week – 5 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Daniel 14:27-42, John 7:1-13

“Fight my fight, O Lord; from the deceitful and impious man rescue me Send forth Your light and Your fidelity; they shall lead me on and bring me to Your holy mountain.” – Psalm 42:1,3

The world … hates Me
because I bear witness concerning it,
that its works are evil.

John 7:7

“ … THE WORLD HATES Christians, so why give your love to it, instead of following Christ, Who loves you and has redeemed you? John is most urgent in his epistle when he tells us, not to love the world by yielding to sensual desires. Never give your love to the world, he warns, or to anything in it. A man cannot love the Father and love the world at the same time. All that the world offers is the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and earthly ambition. The world and its allurements will pass away but the man who has done the will of God shall live forever. Our part, my dear brothers, is to be single-minded, firm in faith and steadfast in courage, ready for God’s will, whatever it may be. Banish the fear of death and think of the eternal life which follows it. That will show people that we really live our faith.

WE OUGHT NEVER TO FORGET, beloved, that we have renounced the world. We are living here now, as aliens and only for a time. When the day of our homecoming puts an end to our exile, frees us from the bonds of the world and restores us to paradise and to the Kingdom, we should welcome it. What man, stationed in a foreign land, would not want to return to his own country, as soon as possible? Well, we look upon paradise as our country and a great crowd of our loved ones awaits us there, a countless throng of parents, brothers and children, longs for us to join them. Assured though they are of their own salvation, they are still concerned about ours. What joy both for them and for us, to see one another and embrace! O the delight of that Heavenly Kingdom where there is no fear of death! O the supreme and endless bliss of everlasting life!

MY DEAR BROTHERS, let all our longing be to join them as soon as we may. May God see our desire, may Christ see this resolve, that springs from faith, for He will give the rewards of His love, more abundantly, to those who have longed for Him more fervently.” – St Cyprian of Carthage (200-258) Bishop of Carthage, Father of the Church and Martyr (An excerpt from On Man’s Mortality).