The purpose of our lives is to reveal God to men... Only when we meet the living God in Christ do we know what life is. We are not some casual and meaningless product of evolution. Each of us is the result of a thought of God. Each of us is willed, each of us is loved, each of us is necessary. There is nothing more beautiful than to know Him and to speak to others of our friendship with Him... it is beautiful and wonderful, because it is truly a service to joy, to God's joy which longs to break into the world. - Pope Benedict XVI, homily 24 April 2005
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For the Year of Faith, proclaimed by Pope Benedict, I decided to purchase some holy cards to give out with tips to waitresses, to put in library books I checked out, and to have on hand as other occasions might arise. These cards easily fit into my wallet, so I am always prepared to drop one whenever the Spirit might move me. This last week at CCD was one of those times. I decided to give each of my students a prayer card to use as a bookmark for their Bibles. We do a lot of Bible reading in class, with frequent flips between the Old Testament types and New Testament antitypes. After passing them out, I read the extended quote to the class. They sat looking at me, perhaps not fully understanding.
Then I asked them a powerful question. "If I asked you what is the purpose of your life, how many of you would have said 'to reveal God to men'?" One solitary hand went up. But that is exactly what Pope Benedict, at the very onset of his pontificate, was telling us - "The purpose of our lives is to reveal God to men... There is nothing more beautiful than to know Him and to speak to others of our friendship with Him."
Do we take that challenge seriously? Do we wake each morning hoping for an opportunity to reveal God to those we encounter that day? This is the challenge of the New Evangelization. This is the challenge of living as a Catholic, because as another pontiff, Paul VI, reminded us in Evangelii Nuntiandi,
"the whole Church...receives the mission to evangelize, and the work of each individual member is important for the whole."So get out there and live lives that reveal God to men or as I remind my students as they leave class each week, BE SAINTS!
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