Disquietude is not a word we hear every day. It refers to a state of anxiety or uneasiness. Understood this way, we pray for eyes of Faith to behold the Transfigured Christ, in light eternal, to transport us from the anxieties and trials of our daily lives, the darkness of our temporal world.
This is not season for discouragement, but season for hope, a season for optimism. We are not alone; we are accompanied by the Triune God and all the heavenly host, as well as all the angels and saints praying for us in heaven and working beside us here on earth. The harvest is ripe, brothers and sisters - what a time to be alive! We know that many people today are hurting, and the only thing that can heal their wounds is the love of Christ.
Eighty men accepted a mission to launch from an aircraft carrier deck, knowing they could not return to the ship. This is the same fortitude it takes to choose to follow Jesus.
Beloved, the victory that Christ won over sin has given us greater blessings than those which sin had taken away from us. Let Lent be a reminder to us that there is a much higher purpose that exists beyond our mortal pain, as we march on to the joy of our Easter Vigil in this life, and eternal reward in the next. O happy fault!
We may not be able to see all which God is doing to redeem our present difficulties, but we can see His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, standing before us, ready to sustain us, and asking, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” My dear brothers and sisters, we have seen Him; He is here, and He is able to keep us from falling and bring us to his glorious presence, without fault and with great joy. May we respond like the man born blind, saying, “Lord, I believe.”
Since the days of the Early Church, the season of Lent provided a time when converts to the Faith were prepared for Holy Baptism; when those who were separated from the Body of the Faithful were reconciled by penitence and forgiveness and restored to the Church; and all Christians reminded of their need to renew their repentance and faith.
Jesus’ merciful love, manifested in his washing of the Apostles’ feet, as Benedict XVI has written, is the “basin in which he cleanses us.” This need to be completely dependent on Jesus’ mercy and love is meant to be continued in the life of the Church Catholic, Christ’s Body on earth, as sacrament and example, received and shared: for there is still much filth to be washed clean in this broken world.
Once we acknowledge we are sinners and we cannot save ourselves, we must know we are saved by the Blood of Christ. We can then bring all our troubles, all our worries and problems to the Cross of Christ. And this is done with the support of our brothers and sisters in Christ.
The Epiphany has not ended; it shines forth to this day, radiating out from the day of Christ’s Incarnation; it is the very reason we as Gentiles can share in the riches of Christ’s inheritance. This means that we who have received this light have the responsibility to both continually seek its source and reflect it so that others may do the same.
I am personally very sad and feel a great loss that the last and preeminent orthodox churchman of the Greatest Generation is no more, but immensely glad that Benedict XVI is at last free of this fallen world.