Reading 1 Gn 3:9-15, 20 After Adam had eaten of the tree,the LORD God called to him and asked him, “Where are you?”He answered, “I heard you in the garden;but I was afraid, because I was naked,so I hid myself.”Then he asked, “Who told you that you were naked?You have eaten, then,from the tree of…
On February 11, 2018, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments inscribed. . . a new obligatory Memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church, into the General Roman Calendar. This memorial is celebrated every year on the Monday after Pentecost. Latin liturgical texts. . . were also promulgated the same day.
Yesterday, we celebrated the feast of Pentecost, the birthday of the Church. On this day, the Church is called to be the Sacrament of Jesus, to be the sign of unity for the human race. At the same time, the Lord commanded His disciples to go and “make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Mt 28:19f) As the disciples went out to proclaim the Good News of Jesus as Lord and Saviour, they won more converts into their fold. But as the Lord instructed, conversion is not reducible to making converts through baptism but they must be instructed in their faith so that they can become His disciples, walking in His step.
Consequently, the Church, as mother who gives birth to new children of God at baptism, has an equal responsibility to help the newly baptized to grow and mature in the faith. Of course, discipleship is an ongoing process. There is only one teacher and that is Jesus the Christ. (cf Mt 23:8-10) The Church, therefore, provides the other sacraments as means for her members to grow in faith, in union with the Lord and His Church, and most of all, to live out their Christian life according to their vocation. The sacrament of the Eucharist strengthens the bond between the disciple and Christ and the Christian community. The Sacrament of Confirmation empowers them to be witnesses of Christ. The Sacrament of Matrimony helps disciples to live out their basic and fundamental vocations as husbands and wives and parents. The Sacrament of Reconciliation forgives their sins and heals fractured relationships. The Church also nourishes the faithful through preaching and teaching the Word of God. The end product is a faithful disciple of the Lord.