Saturday, 25 February 2017
Christian Ukaegbu 05:37:00 Catholic answers
“What reason would we have to commit murder when we say that women who induce abortions are murderers, and will have to give account of it to God? For the same person would not regard the fetus in the womb as a living thing and therefore an object of God’s care [and then kill it].
-Athenagoras of Athens (Legatio35)
Friday, 24 February 2017
Christian Ukaegbu 21:13:00 Daily reflection
Statistical research has revealed that tribalism which is the ill will of self-reformation is blowing in the life of many Nigerians and it is occasioned by the colossal of wrong orientations, false ideas, false conception of things, misplacement of values, lack of basic formation, absence of fundamental home training, ignorance, loss the sense of sin and distorted value syndrome. But William Hoard in his book “Thought of Achievement” (1998, P. 90), once opined that “very much of what we call progress of things today consist in getting rid of false ideas, false conception of things and in taking a point of view that enables us to see the principles, ideas and things in right direction”. Thus, it makes reference to a positive psychological renewal which we may call self-reformation.
Tuesday, 29 November 2016
Tuesday, 1 November 2016
Christian Ukaegbu 20:19:00 Catholic answers
Thursday, 20 October 2016
Christian Ukaegbu 20:23:00 Daily reflection
REFLECTING ON THE FIRST HALF OF THE “HAIL MARY”
Good day brethren, i welcome you to this excellent, inspirational reflection written by Paulinus Ekpunobi. I encourage you to read this wonderful articulation of his.
In the Hail Mary we see how a moment of obedience triggered two millennia of reverence. We cannot help it but to join the generations past to echo her blessings. I wish to make a brief reflection on the first part of the “Hail Mary”, which reads Hail Mary full of Grace the Lord is with thee, Blessed are you amongst women and Blessed in the fruit of your womb.
Three statements are contained in this Angelic Salutation
Ø First from Angel Gabriel – Hail, full of grace, the lord is with you, (Lk 1:28)
Ø Second from St. Elisabeth – blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb (Lk 1:42)
Ø Third from the Church – the Church added the third part to wit, Mary and Jesus, and so we have, Hail “Mary” full of grace…your womb “Jesus”.
HAIL MARY FULL OF GRACE THE LORD IS WITH YOU
It was exceeding great to have angelic manifestation in the ancient times, humans reverence the angels but for an Angel to reverence a human, such has never happened until the time of the visitation (not to talk of a woman in the Jewish tradition).
There are 3 ways that Angels are greater than man:
Purity/dignity: they have only spiritual incorruptible nature compare to man’s composite nature which is corruptible.
Divine familiarity: Angels belong to the household of God inasmuch as they serve him.
Plenitude of the splendour of God’s grace: Angels participate in the light of divine grace itself in the highest degree.
Hence, it utterly unfitting for man to be reverenced by man unless a man is found who supersedes the Angels in all these. And there is no other person than the Shrine Mama – Our Lady of Schoenstatt.
Purity: She exceeds the Angels in purity. Mary incurred neither original sin, nor mortal sin, nor venial sin nor any penalty due to sin. A malediction was placed on Humanity in Genesis 3 (i.e. a curse).
For the woman – she is to conceive in corruption, carry in discomfort and bear in labour. And the more general curse is that man shall return to dust, unto dust shall thou return.
We know that curse came to humanity because of sin, and it will be a grave injustice on the part of God, if He allow a creature so impeccable and perfect like our Lady to be affected with these punishments due to sin. And so during her time to bear the Lord, she was immune, conceived without corruption, carried her pregnancy with solace, and delivered in joy. Then after her life on Earth as the CCC teaches, she was assumed into heaven body and soul without returning to dust. Thus the psalmist represents it better when he says, Arise oh Lord and go to your resting place, Thou and the ark of thy might (Ps. 131:8).
Divine familiarity: Angel Gabriel also affirms this when he says “the Lord is with you” (as if to say that you are on more intimate terms with God than I). The Lord is with Mary as a Son but with the Angels as Lord. The Holy Spirit is with her as in the temple (the Holy Spirit shall come upon you Lk 1:35). She is the daughter of God the Father. She is the noble repose of the Holy Trinity (a place of rest).
In plenitude of grace: Mary has the greater plenitude (abundance, full, enough) of divine grace and this is why Angel Gabriel cannot but to affirm this when he calls her “full of Grace”. St. Thomas Aquinas in reflecting about this affirms thus, the soul of the Blessed Virgin was so filled with grace that from her soul, grace overflowed into the flesh, such that from it she conceived the Son of God.
Blessed art Thou amongst women
Mary was immune from every curse placed on man, in her was the restoration of the fallen house of Israel. Psalm 127:3 says, Children are a blessing and a gift from the Lord, who should be most blessed of all women if not she who bore the greatest Son – the son of God?
Blessed is the fruit of thy womb
Eve desired something in the fruit of the tree in the garden and she couldn’t find what she desired, but our Lady found in her fruit everything that Eve had desired.
Eve sought for three things in her fruit
Eve desired to become like God (Gen. 3:5): but by eating the fruit, Eve became even lower in glory since by sinning she withdrew from the glory of God. The closer we are to God, the more glorified we become. But Mary (and indeed all Christian) have found this in the fruit of her womb. For in Christ, we are united and made like unto God. When he appears, we shall be like him 1John 3:2.
Desired pleasure: She desired pleasure in her fruit because the fruit appeared good to eat (Gen. 3:6), but instead of that, she had pain since after eating it she became aware of her nakedness. But in the fruit of Mary, we find salvation;
I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness… (Isaiah 61:10)
He who eats of my flesh (the fruit of Mary) shall have eternal life (John 6:55)
She sought delight in beholding the fruit (Gen. 3:6): but she didn’t find it delightful again after eating of the fruit. In the fruit of our Lady is one whom the Angels and Saints never grew wearing gazing upon. He is the fairest of the Sons of men (Ps. 44:2) since he is the splendour of the father’s glory. That is why the priest always invites us daily at the Eucharist to behold him who takes away the sins of the world.
As Eve never found in her fruit what she desired, so will no Sinner find in sin the things he truly desire. Only in the fruit of this Schoenstatt Queen shall we find that which we desire.
Grace to you!
Christian Ukaegbu 19:43:00 Daily reflection