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Friday, February 27, 2015

In what areas of your faith-walk is the social dimension missing or neglected? - Daily Reflections February 27,2015



PERSONAL FAITH

The sign of the cross is central to the Christian faith. By the cross, we were saved. The cross is the primary symbol of our salvation. Every Christian is marked by it and called to live by it. Whenever we pray or worship, we sign ourselves with the cross. The cross can have many meanings.
       Two figures mark the cross: a vertical and a horizontal. Marking ourselves with the sign of the cross is reminding ourselves of the two inseparable dimensions of our faith. The vertical dimension marks our covenant relationship with God. The horizontal dimension marks our covenant relationship with our neighbors.
       Today, Jesus highlights the horizontal dimension of the faith when He clearly emphasized that our longing to be reconciled with God must be expressed in a longing to be reconciled with our neighbor. In fact, Jesus makes the latter a requirement for the former. His words could not be any less clear: “If you bring your gift to the altar and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift at the altar, go first to be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift” (Matthew 5:23-24). Later on, Jesus will turn this teaching into a command.
       This is the reason why Jesus designed the forgiveness of sins to be realized through the ministry of priesthood. “If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven” (John 20:23). When we sin, we wound not only our covenant with God. We also wound our covenant with our neighbor. The priest hearing our confession represents the vertical and horizontal dimensions of our faith. As a minister of Christ, we receive God’s forgiveness from the priest. As a human being, we receive the forgiveness of the human community as well.
       Let us live our faith to the full. Faith is always personal but it is never private. Fr. Joel Jason       

REFLECTION QUESTION: In what areas of your faith-walk is the social dimension missing or neglected?

Lord Jesus, You are true God and true Man. Let me glorify You always in my covenant with my neighbor. Amen.

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