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Catholic Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle www.mn.catholic.org.au
wa s saved by God. He, too, was saved
God brought me to a state of
repentance and openness to saving love
at my last moment of rational decision-
making. By God's gr ace, I chose love and
salvation. God must have done the same
for the monster.
In Jesus, God did just that for Adam and
his children. Supreme wisdom and power
and love out-manoeuvred, out-wrestled
and out-loved fallen humanity.
Adam's sin was the most monstrous of all.
It was the sin that led to all consequent
sins -- to all murder and genocide, to all
abuse and life -long suffering, to ever y
conceivable act of hatred. In Christ, God
saved Adam, the daddy of all monster s ,
and his descendants.
Here in the Father's house the
one-time monster is
home. Self-love had
wanted the father
"dead" to allow for
the father's love
monstrous intent and
the foulest behaviour s.
God's wisdom and
power and love cannot
be defeated by Adam -- or
by any lesser monster.
meeting this monster in heaven?
I embrace. I say, "Pr aise and thanks to
God who can and does save even the
Regular contributor Michael O'Connor
presents an intriguing, and ultimately
I have just walked through the Pearly
Gates. "I've made it! " By God's gr ace,
of cour se.
I star t to wander around. Lo and behold,
the fir st person I bump into is a monster.
It's Ivan Milat, the "backpacker murderer",
or Pol Pot of "the killing fields", or "Jihadi
John", the ISIS executioner, or Stalin or
Hitler. It doesn't matter which individual.
It's someone whom we all presume
could not be here, but would rightly be
spending eter nity in agony.
Or it might be the per son who has
brought unbearable suffering and
destruction into my life. Perhaps that
person who fleeced me of my life's
savings, or who drove a loved one to
suicide, or who betr ayed me or deser ted
me? Or maybe one who should have
protected and nur tured me, but instead
abused me and set my life on a course of
self-loathing and self-destr uction ?
It matter s not who. It's one who should
not, by any ear thly standard, be here.
What do I do? How do I respond?
Firstly, though, how did he get here ?
It hits me straight away. (Up here things
do hit you str aight away. Such clarity.)
God's mercy and grace !
If I claimed that I redeemed myself from
doing evil and ear ned my bliss , I could not
be here. My pride would exclude me. I
A MONSTER IN
-- just like
miracle of all.
From left Charlize Saillard, Sharon Biju, Adeline Tamonan
and Faith Mpofu of St Columban's Primary School, Mayfield
celebrated Harmony Day 2015 with a liturgy and market
stalls, raising funds for CatholicCare Refugee Service.
Harmony Day promotes diversity and cultural respect for
anyone who calls Australia home.
Singleton Parish recently baptised and confirmed four
people including Harlen de Jong and Kate Wheeler, pictured
here with their proud RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation)
Team (l-r) Albert Standing, Harlan de Jong, Michael Worden,
Kate Wheeler, Maureen Alsleben, Fr George Mullappallil and
Mary Jones. Photo courtesy of Angela Wheeler.
Holy Spirit Primary School, Kurri Kurri students Landon
Blishen, Cameron Moore,Taleah Mountford and Jewells
O'Keefe celebrated the official opening of their Anzac
memorial garden with principal Paul O'Heir and Member
for Hunter the Hon. Joel Fitzgibbon MP.
wor st of sinner s." How could I ever have
thought God was incapable ? How could
I have doubted God's ability to achieve
his purpose when he created us to
share his life of love for all eter nity,
when he sent his Son to save
us? We fail constantly. God
never does. Especially in
his gr andest and dearest
creative enterprise -- us!
So I embr ace the one-
time monster. I rejoice that
God's mercy and gr ace has
worked a stupendous mir acle
to conver t, tr ansform and save
Suddenly! Another blinding realisation!
Pr aise be to God for what hits me now
as an even more incredible miracle !
I, unbelievably, have forgiven one
whom I had thought was unforgivable !
I'm actually rejoicing in the monster's
salvation and eter nal joy ! I'm not wanting
his eter nal banishment and suffering!
Me, loving the unlovable -- just like God !
Surely the greatest miracle of all.
Gr aciously, I, the "elder son" -- the
prodigal's brother -- have accepted
whole -hear tedly our father's invitation
to be with my brother in the house of
music and dancing and feasting. By gr ace,
my hear t ha s under stood his words : "It
is only right that we should celebrate
and rejoice. Your brother was dead and
has come to life." So was I ! So have
Ama zing gr ace that saved a wretch (just)
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