Sunday, December 25, 2011
"Verbum Caro factum est"
"The Word became flesh"
Catholics are fleshy creatures, because our God is fleshy, we believe in a God who takes on our flesh, who becomes in-car-nate - enfleshed. "Caro" also gives us the words "care" and "caritas" or charity.
Our God cares deeply about us, he isn't vague and fluffy, certainly not a disinterested God, in many ways we are adverse to what the many today call "spiritual", at the In in a sense God leaves the spiritual world in the Incarnation and enters the world of the flesh.
In the OT God cares, almost fusses, about even the curtain and curtain rings in the tent of meeting. He cares about how the Jews worship, what food the Jews eat or don't eat, about how they dress or wear their beards, who they make alliances with etc. etc. What is the purpose of these rules and commandment? At the very least it is to demonstrate God cares.
So too for us, God cares - He cares about how we treat the man on the street, in the shop doorway. He cares about us - the greatest trick of atheists and heretics -ultimately of the devil - is to make us think God is distant, he doesn't care - about anything - least of all us. Isn't that the great cry of despair of so many people today? "No-one cares whether I live or die!" The answer of Christmas, of the Catholic Church is God cares infinitely - God is Caring.
Secular Liberal society, even some who pretend they are within the Church, the Body of Christ, will say it makes no difference to God whether we kill the unborn or not, whether we uses or don't use artificial contraception, whether we are part of his Church or not, whether we are baptised or not, whether we come to Mass or not, or whether we accept his Church's teaching or not, or whether we receive his body, his true flesh, in a state of Grace or not. Or for that matter whether we desire others should be part of his Church.
To the God who cares, the God who becomes care, "caro", all these matter infinitely, as we matter infinitely to him, as we are called to care infinitely.
My thanks to Fr Simon Henry for this video which was the basis for my Christmas sermon.
Posted by Fr Ray Blake