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Catholic Culture and Identity: Is love for real and can it last forever?

Over the past two weeks (July 11-29), I had the humble honour of leading the Train the Trainer course offered by the Archdiocesan Family Life Commission where participants discovered, through Blessed John Paul II’s Theology of the Body, that the body’s primary purpose is to reveal God, who is eternal Love. Despite our sin, we are irrevocably and perennially called to receive God into our lives and to make Him known through our everyday tasks. The call to participate in the Divine Life has never been more urgent.

What does it mean to reveal God in our body? It seems impossible to receive God since he cannot be contained. But he has not commanded us to do something that is impossible. He has come to us in the body of Jesus, the Word made flesh. How amazing! We come to the knowledge of God’s irrevocable love in a person; our God has a human face.

In the struggle to find meaning for life amid the struggles of life, it can seem as though God is absent from us; yet we still seek him. We are not left alone. Jesus is still here with us in a body and we can meet Him. We can meet Jesus personally in His body, the Church, where we become temples of the Holy Spirit and where we receive Him personally in the Blessed Sacrament of His body and blood. We are also called to be the presence of Jesus in the world through Christian Marriage and family life.

Here we discovered that the holiness of the Catholic family is a primary source of revitalising Catholic Culture and Identity because in Genesis humankind is instructed to cultivate the earth in the service of humankind. “Cultivate” is the root of the word “Culture”. This ultimately means shaping the world to meet the needs of the family, the family being the primary source of revitalising or bringing life back into, any culture.

In the family we find peace and freedom to live real love now, in reverence for Jesus in the body, radically altering the way we live our lives leading us to everlasting love.

In the AFLC we see our task during the second priority as bringing to bear even more forcefully on the Church’s thinking the importance of healing, renewing and evangelising family life in the Church and our nation. We will continue to develop, promote and implement those programmes that help us accomplish this but this will not be realised without the encouragement, support and resources of the entire Archdiocese. – Richard Kramer & Msgr Robert Llanos, Archdiocesan Family Life Commission

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