28th July 2014 - We go to God through the humanity of Jesus
In the 1940's and 50's when I was growing up, there was a strong emphasis on Jesus as the Son of God. It wasn't taught, but it was as if the humanity of Jesus was not that important.

Then while studying Theology we learnt how vitally important the humanity of Jesus was, for a number of reasons.

There is also the opposite danger of over emphasising Jesus' humanity to the downplaying of his divinity.

St Teresa of Avila, a great mystic, contemplative and Doctor of the Church, gives us in simple words, a balanced perspective. She teaches that we go to Jesus' divinity through his humanity.

Many people seek God and goodness knows how many give up the search. The key that God himself has given is to come to know Jesus, beginning with his humanity.

It is the same for us who believe in God. In order to come to know and love God more, it is important to grow to know and love Jesus the human being. It is God's way, and the Gospels are a great help to this.

Reflecting and praying the Gospels - in other words spending time with Jesus - is the way to connect to his humanity and so to his divinty.

The place and the importance of Jesus' humanity is what lay behind the special devotions to him under the tiltles of Sacred Heart and Divine Mercy. 

21st July - Jesus the tangible God
In the next few weeks let's look at a few implications of the Incarnation.

Many think that, even if God does exist, it is still very difficult for us to be in conatact with God.

This is far from the truth because, in Jesus, God has reached out to and contacted us. God has become, in other words, very tangible.

As St John writes in his Letters, "Something which has existed since the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our own eyes, which we have watched and touched with our own hands, the Word of life -- this is our theme. That life was made visible; we saw it and are giving our testimony, declaring to you the eternal life, which was present to the Father and has been revealed to us". [1Jn1:1-2]

All we have to do is stop and reflect in Faith and in the quiet of prayer - and we can be in touch with Jesus. We can do it in various ways - in the Rosary or in many of the Gospel scenes.

This week let us be more conscious of the power of our imagination in prayer - and use it more. We can imagine that we are there with Jesus in some scene, or some event, and it, or more importantly He, will become more tangible for us.

14th July - And dwelt among us.
When someone special comes to visit you it is a great honour. If they come to stay with you for a while it is a much greater honour.

One visit from the Son of God - and even a short stay over - would be unforgettable.

Yet we have infinitely much more than that. God'€™s Son came to make his home with us - or as Scripture says '€œPitched his tent among us'€.

When you stop and think, it is earth shattering, mind boggling, incomprehensible.

Truly were it not for the fact that it was revealed - told to us by God - it would be unbelievable.

Stop and wonder at it all for a few moments - spend a few moments with Jesus pondering this great truth.

7th July 2014 - Golden Jubilee of Priesthood
Those who have been following my thought for the week for some time know that I have been reflecting on and '€˜teasing out'€™ the Angelus. Let'€™s take it up again from the verse above.

God has always connected with our world. We know from the Old Testament how he intervened in history in various ways through leaders, prophets, judges, kings, messengers, extraordinary happenings etc.

When God'€™s Son took flesh, God intervened in our history and in our world in a way that was like no other way. It was most extraordinary. After the marvellous work of creation, the next greatest act of God, and we believe the greatest of all actions, was redemption. This was made possible by the Incarnation - the Word taking flesh.

God'€™s Son, while not losing or letting go his divinity, became one of us.

No other religion, not even the great ones, believe this. For them this would be impossible to even consider.

We can understand in some ways the heresies. The Arians would say that Christ was human but could not be divine. The Nestorians would say that Jesus was not really human, only some sort of appearance. In other words God couldn'€™t demean himself by becoming human.

No - God could do this and did do it. Jesus is truly God and truly man.