Wednesday, 24 October 2012

As constant as the rising sun


I want to invite you on a journey. Let's go up the mountain with me. We leave at midnight and arrive before dawn. I want us to watch the sunrise together. After that we can go down and have fun in the village, and then we head to the beach to watch the sunset. How does that sound to you?

Actually no, it doesn't have to be today. It can be any day. And after our journey, YOU can make your own. If there's a guest in town, you can invite him or her to the usual place to watch the sunrise or sunset with you. You can do it over and over again, at different places, with different moods, accompanied by different people, yet watching the same sun, because we only have one sun.

And yet you never think of the sun as archaic or boring. No. In fact, you delight in its monotonous behaviour. Because then you have something to rely on, something you can hang on to. There's security in what is constant. When you're having a long day at the office, a rough evening with the family, or a stressful night in a haunted house, you can say to yourself: "Don't worry. The sun will rise again tomorrow and everything will be fine." Do you honestly know that the sun will rise again tomorrow? No. But you dare to hope because that's what the sun has been doing ever since it was created. You trust it. It never disappoints, it's always there. The sun may be clouded or eclipsed at times, but it's there. To believe otherwise is simply absurd.

Sure, sometimes you hate it. You hate the fact that the sun still stubbornly rises on a Monday morning, because that means you have to get up and go to school or work. But what if one day the sun decides to be innovative and doesn't appear on that Monday morning? What if it likes its creativity and decides a random time to rise and set?

Wouldn't you rather prefer a predictable sun behaving in a repetitious manner?

That's exactly what the Church does. She teaches the Truth that comes from God. Since God is constant and unchanging, so is His Truth, and so must be His Church. His Love is also constant and unchanging, given freely to everybody, good, and bad; therefore, the appropriate response to that Love must also be a constant and unchanging Liturgy of the Mass.

The Pope, a mere human, is powerless to change the Church or her laws, because they come from an Authority higher than himself. Expecting the Pope to lift the ban on contraception, abortion, same-sex marriage, and a number of other things is like expecting an astronomer to change the orbit of the sun.

So the next time you feel sick, confused, and lost in the uncertainties around you, you know where to look. There is a place as constant as the rising sun. Go uphill and find the Church, the City on the Hill, blazing forever with the light of Truth and Love that can only come from God. It is Home. Home is always there for you no matter what.

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Image: "The Sunrize", Ivan Aivazovsky, 1874

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