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Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Bonds of Love

Friday was the day of the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Miss Catherine Middleton at Westminster Abbey.  Richard Chartres, the Bishop of London, began his sermon as follows:

“Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.”

So said St Catherine of Siena whose festival day this is.  Marriage is intended to be a way in which man and woman help each other to become what God meant each one to be, their deepest and truest selves.

(Further on in his sermon he said:)

We stand looking forward to a century which is full of promise and full of peril. Human beings are confronting the question of how to use wisely the power that has been given to us through the discoveries of the last century. We shall not be converted to the promise of the future by more knowledge, but rather by an increase of loving wisdom and reverence, for life, for the earth and for one another.  (Source)

It is with such teachings that the common bonds of Christendom become apparent. First, there is the belief that sufficient liberty must abound to allow individuals to “Be who God meant you to be” accompanied closely by the expectation that surprising and beneficent things can result when this condition prevails—when people become “their deepest and truest selves.”  This condition taps simultaneously the creativity of the conscious and subconscious mind as well as the leadings of the Holy Spirit.  The second belief is that creation of things alone can never substitute for their purposeful use. “Loving wisdom and reverence, for life, for the earth and for one another” validate creativity in all its forms and serve to ward off blind materialism with its hangover bouts of depression and despair.  A wedding illustrates the great paradox that access to true freedom is preceded by the constraints of commitment undertaken within the bonds of love.   

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