–– Sito di FORMAZIONE PERMANENTE MISSIONARIA –– Uno sguardo missionario sulla Vita, il Mondo e la Chiesa A missionary look on the life of the world and the church –– VIDA y MISIÓN – VIE et MISSION – VIDA e MISSÃO ––
The deep, important things that most affect us are usually not big and showy, but tiny, perhaps even imperceptible.
We see the truth of this just by looking at the human body where there are countless hidden, silent processes, all going on at once. Everything is interconnected, no part does anything that doesn’t affect everything else.
This is true too of any social body. Every community or society has a certain visible life that can be seen and whose overt interconnections, to an extent, can be grasped, charted, and written up into textbooks. But, just as with the human body, most of the deep things in a community are under the surface, invisible, and silent.
This is even more true of the body of Christ where most of the important processes there are also invisible. Like any other body, partly this body is visible – physical, historical, something that can be observed from the outside.
But the body of Christ is more than meets the physical eye. Countless, silent, invisible processes are going on beneath. As in all bodies, there are deadly viruses, an immune system, cancer-cells, and health-carrying enzymes. What’s deepest inside of life is not visible to the naked eye.
It is this background too that can help give us a sense of the mystical union we have with each other inside “the communion of saints”. Inside the body of Christ, we are present to each other and carry each other across the miles. Everything we do, good or bad, affects all the others. For this reason, the church teaches that there is no such thing as a private act – of sin, virtue, or anything else. Nothing is private inside a body, everything affects everything.
Moreover, our union with each other links us, even beyond death. Inside the communion of saints, we believe that our loved ones who have died are alive, still with us, and able to communicate with us and we with them.
To believe this is to be both consoled and challenged. Consoled, in knowing that we carry each other in love and union, across all distance, even through death. But we are challenged too in knowing that everything we do, be it ever so private, is either a bad virus or an healthy enzyme affecting the overall health of the body of Christ and the family of humanity.
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