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May 16th
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Written by Bobby Reyes   
Monday, 22 March 2010 09:32
CONTEMPLATING CHRIST. LIFE OF PIETY. The enemies of grace. The remedy: to contemplate Christ. I, when I am lifted up from the earth will draw all men to myself Our Lord says (Communion Antiphon, John 12:32). The first Reading of to-day’s Mass brings us a passage from the Book of Numbers (First Reading, Num 21:4-9) which narrates how the people of Israel began to murmur against God and against Moses, because although they had been set free and brought out of Egypt, they were tired of travelling towards the Promised Land. As a punishment, the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people, so that many people of Israel died. Then the people turned to Moses, acknowledging their sin, and Moses interceded with God that He might free them from the serpents. The Lord said to him, Make a fiery serpent and set it on a pole; and every one who is bitten, when he sees it, shall live. So Moses made a bronze serpent, and set it on a pole; and if a serpent bit any man, he would look at the bronze serpent and live. This passage from the Old Testament, as well as being an historical narrative, is the type and image of what was to take place later with the coming of the Son of God. In his intimate conversation with Nicodemus Our Lord makes a direct reference to this narrative: And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whosoever believes in him may have eternal life (John 3:14-15). Christ on the Cross is the salvation of the human race, the remedy for all our ills. He went voluntarily to Calvary, so that whosoever believes may have eternal life, so that he might draw all men to himself. In no matter what age they attack God’s people as they travel towards the promised land of Heaven, the serpents and the poison are much the same: selfishness, sensuality, doctrinal errors and confusion, laziness, envy, slander, calumny ... The grace we receive in Baptism, which is intended to reach its full development, is threatened by the same enemies as they always have been. In all ages we can perceive the wounds of original sin and of personal sins. We Christians must seek the remedy and the antidote — just as the Israelites bitten by the serpents in the wilder ness did — in the only place that it is to be found: in Jesus Christ and in his saving doctrine. We must not cease from contemplating him raised above the earth on the Cross, if we truly want to reach the Promised Land that comes at the end of this short journey. That is all this life really is. And as we do not want to reach our destination alone, we will strive to get many others to look at Jesus, in whom is salvation. Look at Jesus. Place before your eyes his most Holy Humanity, contemplate him in the Mysteries of the Holy Rosary, in the Way of the Cross, in the scenes that the Gospels narrate for us, or in the Tabernacle. Only if we have great piety will we be strong against the harassment of a world which seems to want to separate itself more and more from God, dragging with it anyone who is not on firm and sure ground. We cannot turn our gaze away from God, because we see the havoc that the enemy wreaks around us every day. By himself, nobody is immune. ‘Vultum tuum, Domine, requiram’: Thy face, Lord, do I seek; hide not thy face from me (Ps 26). We must grow in fortitude through our loving and constant conversation with Jesus, through prayer, through keeping presence of God throughout the day, and through our visits to the Blessed Sacrament. We must remember, too that Our Lord, Jesus, is not only the remedy for our weakness; He is also our Love. We are now at FACEBOOK, search Defensores Fidei Foundation. With permission from Scepter UK. Short excerpt from IN CONVERSATION WITH GOD by Francis Fernandez. To subscribe or unsubscribe, please email The DEFENSORES FIDEI FOUNDATION actively spreads Ecclesial Information, Catechetical Instructions and Apologetics in pursuit of making good Catholics better Catholics. Any contribution to help this apostolate is heaven-sent and now TAX-DEDUCTIBLE (in USA). Please visit us at

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