As the liturgical year ends, the readings turn toward teachings, reflections, and the meaning of the resurrection for our lives today. The first truth tells us that the resurrection is to about something in the distant future either after death or at the end of the time, but rather an event that means something for the immediate now. This first teaching appears already as a key insight into “the reign of God is at hand.”

In the second reading, we find another implication. The resurrection should “encourage and strengthen” our hearts for the work (the good) that we do today, right now. In other words, if I keep my focus on this truth, then I have a rationale for resisting temptations and sins. This process was apparently more successful to the ancient mind than it is today, largely because we are a culture awash in feelings, and neither the intellect nor the will. Our hearts are to be directed to the love of God, not love of this world. This is the crux of the challenge for th Christian today.

The last truth in the readings relates to and connects the resurrection to evangelization. The Word of God proclaims an alternate reality to the one we have accepted like Esau’s porridge. One’s salvation is not personal, but rather oriented toward the common good, and there is no common good if we have withdrawn ourselves from any sense or meaning of community. The second reading is written in the “you” plural, which pathetic English has no way to distinguish from “you” singular, unless you’re from Texas, where “all y’all” seems to work.

Another truth regards body purity, becoming the greatest challenge in this culture of all. This physical purity orients the present body in the flesh toward the resurrection of the body, which will be transfigured or changed in some profound way in relationship to Being itself, if not “in Being.”

The question is this: do these things connect to the modern person, or not?

Alan Hartway

Theological Studies at Catholic Theological Union, Chicago IL; Master of Fine Arts, Poetics, at Naropa University, Boulder CO 1996; Master of Arts, Greek Classics, University of Colorado, Boulder CO 2012; Taught at Naropa University from 1999 through 2015; Chair of Interdisciplinary Studies from 2007-2015; Member of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, Kansas City Province since 1974; Pastor at Guardian Angel Catholic Church, Mead, CO, ministry from 2007-2020 Currently Retired

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