Victim of Love

The thoughts and prayers of a soul who deeply desires to Love God as He Himself desires to be Loved.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

St. Thomas Aquinas on the Resurrection of the Dead

QUALITIES OF THE RISEN BODIES
There is a fourfold condition of all those who shall take part in the resurrection.
(a) The Identity of the Bodies of the Risen.--It will be the same body as it is now, both as regards its flesh and its bones. Some, indeed, have said that it will not be this same body which is corrupted that shall be raised up; but such view is contrary to the Apostle: "For this corruptible must put on incorruption." And likewise the Sacred Scripture says that by the power of God this same body shall rise to life: "And I shall be clothed again with my skin; and in my flesh I shall see my God."
(b) The Incorruptibility of the Risen Bodies.--The bodies of the risen shall be of a different quality from that of the mortal body, because they shall be incorruptible, both of the blessed, who shall be ever in glory, and of the damned, who shall be ever in punishments: "For this corruptible must put on incorruption; and this mortal must put on immortality."
And since the body will be incorruptible and immortal, there will no longer be the use of food or of the marriage relations: "For in the resurrection they shall neither marry nor be married, but shall be as the Angels of God in heaven." This is directly against the Jews and Mohammedans: "Nor shall he return any more into his house."
(c) The Integrity of the Risen Bodies.--Both the good and the wicked shall rise with all soundness of body which is natural to man. He will not be blind or deaf or bear any kind of physical defect: "The dead shall rise again incorruptible," this is to mean, wholly free from the defects of the present life.
(d) The Age of the Risen Bodies.--All will rise in the condition of perfect age, which is of thirty-two or thirty-three years. This is because all who were not yet arrived at this age, did not possess this perfect age, and the old had already lost it. Hence, youths and children will be given what they lack, and what the aged once had will be restored to them: "Until we all attain the unity of faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the age of the fullness of Christ."

CONDITION OF THE BLESSED
It must be known that the good will enjoy a special glory because the blessed will have glorified bodies which will be endowed with four gifts.
(a) Brilliance.--"Then shall the just shine as the sun in the kingdom of their Father."
(b) Impassibility (i.e., Incapability of Receiving Action).--"It is sown in dishonor; it shall rise in glory." "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and death shall be no more. Nor mourning, nor crying, nor sorrow shall be anymore, for the former things are passed away."
(c) Agility.--"The just shall shine and shall run to and fro like sparks among the reeds."
(d) Subtility.--"It is sown a natural body; it shall rise a spiritual body." This is in the sense of not being altogether a spirit, but that the body will be wholly subject to the spirit

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Knowledge of our weakness purifies us

This has been an awesome lent! One more week to go and then.... Easter!
Our gracious Lord has given me the grace to deny myself this lent in a way that I haven't been able to in years! What joy comes to the heart when little sacrifices are made for Love! The first three weeks of lent I was like a 'strong man'. I was able to live without all those little things that I was so attatched to: computer, chocolate, diet coke... They were really addictions.
It was during the fourth week that I fell. I broke my penance about three times. I was feeling a little sick and tired and then a thousand excuses came as to why I can 'have a little chocolate' or get on the computer to look something up. After taking pleasure in these created things the soul feels completely wretched. The suffering I felt for being unfaithful was not worth the miniscule pleasure that I received from eating and reading news that I really didn't need to know for any good or holy reason. Why did I do it when I knew it wasn't good for me? Because I am a weak sinner, that's why. So after a few days of suffering I thought to myself - how can this be redeemed? How can I make up for what I've done? And St. Joseph answered me on his feast day: "Offer up the suffering and humiliation you received because of your infidelity and all will be made new." And I believe, O my God, that you will give me even more than if I hadn't fallen at all. O my glorious and merciful Love, how great You are!
This reminds me of something that happened during my sorrowful time of sin a few years ago. I was suffering one day so much that I had to lay down on the couch. As I lay there in my grief the pain increased so much that I said to myself, "What is happening to me?"
My five year old son was on the floor with colors and paper and he was scribbling with a red color and as I was asking this question to myself he cried out in his sweet little voice, "It's the fire of God's Love! It's the fire of God's Love!" From the mouth of babes...