Notable quotations from Pope Benedict XVI and official teachings of the Roman Catholic Church
Each year, on the occasion of Lent, the Church invites us to a sincere review of our life in light of the teachings of the Gospel. This year I would like to offer you some reflections on the great theme of justice, beginning from the Pauline affirmation: "The justice of God has been manifested through faith in Jesus Christ" (cf. Rm 3:21-22).
Just as man needs bread, so does man have even more need of God. Saint Augustine notes: if "justice is that virtue which gives every one his due ... where, then, is the justice of man when he deserts the true God?" ...
Injustice, the fruit of evil, does not have exclusively external roots; its origin lies in the human heart, where the seeds are found of a mysterious cooperation with evil.
At the heart of the wisdom of Israel, we find a profound link between faith in God Who "lifts the needy from the ash heap" (Ps 113: 7) and justice towards one's neighbor.
Conversion to Christ, believing in the Gospel, ultimately means this: to exit the illusion of self-sufficiency in order to discover and accept one's own need - the need of others and God, the need of His forgiveness and His friendship.
... Humility is required to accept that I need Another to free me from "what is mine" to give me gratuitously "what is His." This happens especially in the sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist.
Thanks to Christ's action, we may enter into the "greatest" justice which is that of love.... the justice that recognizes itself in every case more a debtor than a creditor, because it has received more than could ever be expected. Strengthened by this very experience, the Christian is moved to contribute to creating just societies, where all receive what is necessary to live according to the dignity proper to the human person and where justice is enlivened by love.
May this penitential season be for every Christian a time of authentic conversion and intense knowledge of the mystery of Christ, Who came to fulfill every justice.
(Source; Message for Lent, dated October 30, 2009)
Published by: Presentation Ministries, 3230 McHenry Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45211, (513) 662-5378, www.presentationministries.com