Sunday, June 1, 2008

This is the Victory that Conquers the World, Our Faith (Part One)

Warning: I am copying my notes for the Spiritual Exercises of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation here. If you wish to wait and receive them first hand, then go no further!

Friday Evening, May 15, 2008

We begin by watching together the most powerful work that the Mystery has accomplished among us -- in São Paulo (video presentation of the event in the São Paulo cathedral).

  • [How do we ] belong to our history
  • we have encountered everything that we need to encounter
  • "You are for us the path to encounter Christ" (Marcos Zerbini).
  • Today New Earth and Without Earth are united... [Tierra Nueva is the name of Julian Carron's movement, which he gave over to Communion and Liberation when he joined with Father Giussani; and Sin Terra is the name of the movement that Cleuza and Marcos Zerbini handed over to Communion and Liberation earlier this year]
  • I wanted to begin by watching [this video] as a sign of a method based entirely on giving priority to what Christ does among us.
  • We don't desire to do anything other than to follow what he gives us.
  • What we have just seen is the gift -- faith in Jesus Christ, living, present, here...
  • When speaking of faith, it's almost impossible not to feel the weight of that question: "When the Son of Man returns, will he find faith on earth?"
  • difficulty we have recognizing the Mystery as a reality in our midst.
  • Self-deductions, projections [get in the way] then the Mystery becomes the fruit of thought, a deduction, rather than a recognition.
  • Father Giussani's words on his deathbed: "Reality has never betrayed me."
  • One can stay in the Movement for years and still feel the Mystery is an abstraction and Jesus is an illusion...
  • We can see it in how we see reality, how we describe reality -- the Mystery is not present -- it's just a sentiment or an ethical effort, not a given fact of Unity.
  • It's as if we were the creators rather than witnesses to what we believe in.
  • We are witnesses, not creators. [Pope Benedict]
  • Not until modernity did we begin to think it is an invention of man.
  • from the document of the Synod on the Eucharist: Jesus Christ is not just an abstract concept. He is capable of entering human history.
  • [we must] build on the rock, on what is certain.
  • Our path: 1) The heart 2) the heart is not our feelings but reason which must continually be broadened. 3) The summit of reason is religiosity 4) This time -- let's try to arrive at the root -- to speak of faith that flowers, like a flower at the summit of reason.
  • It is impossible to live in a context without being effected -- our culture is one in which Christ is abstract/forgotten/denied.
  • We must become aware of a mindset which while apparently exalting a religious rebirth censures God by making him abstract.
  • What is the question? What are we dealing with?
  • Before being something to do or a work, it is a problem of knowing. Not a problem of feelings or eithics.
  • The denial of the fact that God is all in all has its root in an irreligiosity that began [separation of God as origin and source
  • Nothing is more concrete than that Another is making me now.
  • In our experience...he's acting with a power of which we are not even aware.
  • [we must use] reason plus experience
  • Reality, our own reality and all that we see is a given, and reason, if it is to be loyal to itself...cannot conclude without recognizing him at work.
  • We're unreasonable because we don't submit our reason to our experience of God, which does not broaden reason to the point of recognizing what is given, reality, which is the source, the Mystery.
  • [long except -- a dialogue between Pepone and Don Camillo]
  • It's like a cry Wake Up! is something abstract cxapable of generating what we've seen?
  • Making something happen in front of our eyes
  • And his Presence fills me with silence
  • Silence borne from the event. One remains without words before what occurs before our eyes.
  • Let's lift one another up with our silence.


Freder1ck said...

Ok. I printed them out and will use them to supplement my own notes this weekend...

Suzanne said...

God bless you during the exercises -- and if you find any errors or can fill in some of my blanks, please let me know...It's always feels like such a long wait for the booklet to be published.

Freder1ck said...

This was very helpful to Karen and me after taking notes. The next Traces (not this one) will have the booklets.

Dumbstruck by the Mystery

...our temptation is always to impose our prejudices or our measure on reality -- except when we are faced with a fact that leaves us dumbstruck, and instead of dominating the fact ourselves, we are dominated, overcome by it. If there were no moments of this kind, the Mystery could do anything, but in the end, we would reduce everything to the usual explanation. But not even a Nobel Prize winner can stop himself from being dumbstruck before an absolutely gratuitous gesture. If there were not these moments, we would find answers, explanations, and interpretations to avoid being struck by anything. It is good that some things happen that we cannot dominate, then we have to take them seriously, and this is the great question of philosophy. If the conditions for the possibility of knowledge (see Kant) impose themselves on reality or if there is something that is so powerfully disproportionate that it does not let itself be "grasped" by the conditions of possibility, then the horizon opens. If this were not the case, then we could dominate everything and be in peace, or at least without drama. Instead, not even the intelligence of a Nobel Prize winner could prevent him from coming face-to-face with a fact that made him dumbstruck -- instead of dominating, it was he who was dominated. Here begins the drama, because I am called to answer. It is the drama that unfolds between us and the Mystery, through certain facts, certain moments, in which the Mystery imposes itself with this evidence. These are facts that we cannot put in our pocket, which we cannot reduce to antecedent factors.
-- Julian Carron in "Friends, that is, Witnesses."