Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Squarely on the side of the human person (Pope John Paul II, in "Redemptor Hominis", 40)

The Church cannot abandon man, for his "destiny," that is to say his election, calling, birth and death, salvation or perdition, is so closely and unbreakably linked with Christ. We are speaking precisely of each man on this planet, this earth that the Creator gave to the first man, saying to the man and the woman: "subdue it and have dominion."

Each man in all the unrepeatable reality of what he is and what he does, of his intellect and will, of his conscience and heart. Man who in his reality has, because he is a "person," a history of his life that is his own and, most important, a history of his soul that is his own.

Man who, in keeping with the openness of his spirit within and also with the many diverse needs of his body and his existence in time, writes this personal history of his through numerous bonds, contacts, situations, and social structures linking him with other men, beginning to do so from the first moment of his existence on earth, from the moment of his conception and birth.

Man in the full truth of his existence, of his personal being and also of his community and social being—the sphere of his own family, in the sphere of society and very diverse contexts, in the sphere of his own nation or people (perhaps still only that of his clan or tribe), and in the sphere of the whole of mankind--this man is the primary route that the Church must travel in fulfilling her mission.

Man
is the primary and fundamental way for the Church, the way traced out by Christ himself, the way that leads invariably through the mystery of the Incarnation and the Redemption”.

"The Kingdom of Heaven is a condition of the heart." (Friedrich Nietzsche)