Greetings readers from a very snowy/slushy Manhattan! As a survivor of this year’s Washington “snowpocalypse”, the storm that stuck our city today – while not an unmitigated disaster – was not the biggest I’ve ever experienced, but it was certainly a whopper – and enough to keep most of us wisely at home and in doors. While we are safely ensconced inside during this first full week of Lent, perhaps we can take advantage of the time indoors by contemplating Pope Benedict XVI’s message to the world for Lent 2010. The Pope’s theme this Lent is “The Justice of God Has Been Manifested Through Faith in Jesus Christ”, and his message – very fitting for a blog concerned for things of Earth as well as Heaven – is a fascinating reflection on the requirements of “justice” incumbent upon us a People of God. The Pope’s discussion of justice is not a rehash of philosophical requirements of justice that we remember from our college reading of the works of Aristotle, Locke, Hobbes and John Stewart Mill on what we are each “due”; instead the Pope’s message on justice calls us to create a “justice” that is more than that which can be guaranteed by law. To live life fully, something more intimate is necessary: the Pope’s prescription calls us to exit our illusion of self-sufficiency and to accept our own need: our need for others and God, for forgiveness, friendship and love. It’s a timely message for these troubled times, and should be read by everyone. The full text of the Pope’s message can be found here, and further resources to help us reflect on and live out God’s Justice this Lent can be found at the United State’s Bishop’s website.
So, while the weather keeps you inside this weekend, why not take a moment and read the Pope’s reflections on Justice, and help to prepare yourself for the glorious feast of Easter, when by the mystery of his sacrifice Jesus fulfilled every cry for justice, now and for all time.