Celebrating our Humanity

Fom the very beginning 14 billion years ago, the world was already permeated and filled with God’s compassionate presence. There never was a time or space in the history of evolution when God was absent from the world. In the person of Christ this tremendous love story has finally been revealed. The human is now the home of the divine. The redemption has happened. Salvation has taken place. What was begun in creation is completed in the incarnation. The long-awaited healing has brought a stunning vision to human awareness. The search for God is no longer a dualistic  journey outwards; it is the recognition of what is already throbbing within us. That is what we celebrate in the sacraments. The immediacy of the eternal God keeps slipping our mind. It is divine power that energises our daily lives. Grace is life fully lived. Gods basic gift to us is the life we live and the good earth from which we make our living. . .

In Doctrine and Life Sean Fagan explains that Francis of Assisi with his eyes of faith, had no difficulty with this kind of vision. For him the sun and the moon, fire and water, animals and humans, all spoke of God. As Christians, this inside is offered to all of us. The smallest particle of creation is the theophany, a revelation of God – the acorn, the grain of sand, the shrill siren of a passing train. All too often our act of seeing stops at appearances, failing to explore the loving and meaning, ‘the dearest freshness’ at the core. We need eyes to read the wind, the stars, people’s faces as they pass, new roads as they are made, in such a way as to go below the surface. But there are moments which stand out from all others, moments which come like a gift ‘when the focus shifts and the single leaf becomes the universe, a rock speaks prophecies and a smile transform a relationship.’

We call such moments sacred, because in them we glimpse something of the sacredness of life, the wonder of God. Following on from this ‘what needs to be emphasised is that our sacramental celebration becomes more meaningful when it is seen as a highpoint, a peak moment, a special occasion in a life that is already sacramental in its own right. The sacraments are of a piece of the rest of life and reality not eruptions from a different world. In this sense it is more helpful to approach them from the context of life as a whole. They are moments of insight, bringing home truth, each in its own way, the deeper meaning of our life and destiny. The sacraments declare forth what is otherwise hidden in the darkness of the world, in the routine of every day. They bring to focus and draw our attention to what we tend to ignore and lose sight of when we are busy about many things.’ (Sean Fagan)

In time and space, in ordinary signs and symbols, the scattered fragments of our lives are gathered up and for a moment given meaning in the light of Christ.

(Passion for the Possible pp 22, 23)