Donnerstag, 29. März 2018

ധ്രുവദീപ്തി // Easter Message: Easter, the Celebration of love’s Triumph- // Fr. Sebastian Thottippattu

ധ്രുവദീപ്തി // Easter  Message:

 Fr. Sebastian Thottippattu


the  Celebration of love’s  Triumph-

Fr. Sebastian Thottippattu

 love’s triumph-
The Solemnity of Easter is the most significant feast in the Christian Liturgical calendar because it ratifies in a mystical manner the culmination and purpose of every human life. It is not the mere commemoration of a historical event in the life of Christ but rather it enunciates what life is all about. When the Christian churches all over the world resound with Alleluias on Easter morning and the weeks following, it is actually the proclamation of a victory beyond all telling. It is the accomplishment of the very purpose of the incarnation in Christ. When Jesus rose again from the cruelest form of death on Calvary, it was looked upon as a terrible defeat of his claims as Son of God. But through his resurrection from death, which we celebrate at Easter, he vindicated the validity of the power of love to overcome all things. He had foretold more than once what was awaiting him in Jerusalem. But his apostles never took it seriously because they could not reconcile it with their concept of the Messiah. Peter even sought to dissuade him from going through it and got a firm rebuke from the Master. However, Jesus did not leave them at that but gave the inner core of his apostolic band a glimpse of his true glory at the Transfiguration on Mount Tabor.

The one truth that any careful reader of the New Testament cannot fail to notice is the paradoxical eagerness of Jesus towards his suffering and death. In speaking to Nicodemus Jesus makes plain the purpose of his life: “God so loved the world that he sent his only Son that whoever believes in him may not perish but may have eternal lifeAs Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the son of man be lifted up so that whoever believes in him may have eternal life” (Jn.3:14-16).  Jesus repeats the same words again before he is about to embark on his final journey to Jerusalem. When the Greeks come seeking to meet him he knew that his hour had come and in their presence he proclaimed: “…Now sentence is being passed on this world; now the ruler of this world is to be driven out. And when I am lifted up from the earth, I shall draw everyone to myself” (Jn.12: 31-32). Jesus speaks of his death as a means of drawing people to himself because he had spoken of it as something that he would embrace voluntarily out of love. “No one takes it from me but I lay it down of my own free will” (Jn.10:18). Through love he meant to draw people to him but it was a love that hurt him to the core. St Mother Teresa spoke of love that should hurt if it is true. The cup of suffering that Jesus would drink offering no resistance was the perfect proof of that. It was not the cruelty of the cross that made it redemptive but the immensity of love behind the acceptance of it. In the metaphor of the seed that falls to the ground and dies producing much fruit, Jesus was drawing a perfect parallel to his life and death that would bring about new life for all.

 The sufferings and death of Jesus 
The sufferings and death of Jesus had eternal value because there was pure and unconditional love underlying it. Devoid of love, suffering is evil and is to be avoided but when love qualifies it, all suffering can turn to joy. St. Francis of Assisi bears testimony to it in his sermon on perfect joy. Love always calls for sacrifice and it hurts and hurts terribly sometimes. As a matter of fact, the prospect of the suffering awaiting him, made Jesus cringe and pray at Gethsemane, “Father, if it is your will, remove this cup from me; yet not my will but your will be done” (Lk.22:42). His human nature shrank before pain but his love for his Father and for every human being on earth overcame its bitterness. It is the same with every human being who is confronted with pain. However, the love that one brings into it can transcend the bitterness of any suffering and make one capable of embracing it. We have concrete examples of it in mothers who can endure any trouble for the sake of their children. It is known that Blessed Rani Maria, the Franciscan Clarist Sister who was martyred in India, uttered the name of Jesus at every stab wound her assassin inflicted upon her, because she was in love with Jesus to whom she had surrendered her life on entering the convent. Anything else would have drawn a different reaction from her. What made her blessed was not the cruelty of the suffering she endured but the love that sustained her through it. This is the power of the resurrection that every Christian, nay every human being, has been bequeathed at the cross. St. Paul speaks of it in his letter to the Galatians: “I am crucified with Christ and it is no longer I who live but it is Christ who lives in me. I now live my life by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me” (Gal.2:20). This ought to be the state of every Christian who has taken his/her Christian life earnestly.

 The victory of Easter
is the victory of love.
The victory of Easter is the victory of love. Anywhere and everywhere where love triumphs over evil and pain, the power of the resurrection is witnessed. Easter is an open invitation to the whole of humanity to embark upon loving to the extent of losing oneself for the sake of another. “There is no greater love than this that one gives one’s life for one’s friends” (Jn. 15:13). Everyone who is on the path of love acts by the power of the resurrection. We can all truly exclaim: “Christ is Risen, Alleluia!” if we let Jesus Christ the Risen Lord, accomplish his death and resurrection in us through the occurrences of daily life that bear the shadow of the paschal mystery.


Sonntag, 4. März 2018

ധ്രുവദീപ്തി : Christianity- Chavara A Saintly Person // Loving Words of a Founding Father to his Community: A Commentary on his Testament. // Fr. Dr. Thomas Kadankavil

ധ്രുവദീപ്തി : Christianity- Chavara A Saintly Person //

Loving Words of a Founding Father 
to his Community: 
A Commentary on his Testament.

Fr. Dr. Thomas Kadankavil CMI 


The word testament is used chiefly in the phrase " Last will and testament"a written document providing for the disposition of all that belong to oneself after death. Some aspect of covenant is also implied here, for it is an agreement made by two or more persons or parties to uphold and effectively discharge all that is stipulated in the testament.

The latest revised text of the Constitutions of the CMI Congregation published on March 19, 2014 incorporates, in accordance with the resolution of the General Synaxis 36(2008), the following testament as epilogue with the title Testament of Blessed Kuriakose Elias Chavara to his Brethren. It is regarded as his authentic statement on the way his brethren should live in the congregation.

1. Submission to God's will: 

Dear Children, by the special grace of God, we have been called to be members of the congregation, dear to the Mother of God. This has been so, because willed it so and notbecause man planned it thus. I am sure of this as I am sure of this being paper. The founders of theis congregation, Rev. Fathers, Thomas Palackal and Thomas Porukara, had sought and arranged for this being Dominican order. That is why we stared unprecedentedly wearing the the white cassock and took other steps. But our blessed Mother, seeing our frailty took us into her special love. But so far, neither you nor I have become true monks. The sign of a monk is complete surrender of self and practice of obedience, as if he had no eyes or ears. If one has that, he is true religious. Realizing this make strenuous effort to practice it, for we must offer ourselves to obey in all things our superiors, thus practicing the virtue of obedience to perfection. Don't be discouraged. Although in the begining, you may find it difficult and against your inclinations and tendencies, after sometime you will find it good and you will begin to feel that this is the right attitude. Beside you will also enjoy great peace of mind. We owe the same obedience to the other Sub-Superiors and finally to one another. He who practices perfect obedience in all these spheres will enjoy heavenly peace in this monastery itself(Vol.4,70, 71, English edition,1990).

2- Mutual love and Concern :

My dear brethren, let the Vicars of each of our monasteries foster real charity amoung themselves and maintain a true bond. However numorous the monasteries are, all must be like the members of one family, children born to, nursed and brought up by the same mother. Never let this love weakens, but let it grow stronger from day to day. Bear this in mind as an important piece of advice.,in order that this love may not weaken. Let the vicars of the monasteries vie with one another and show greater interest in meeting the needs and request coming from the other monasteris rather than those of one's own. When you assemble periodically to discuss different matters, settle your mutual financial account till that date. Lest this love weaken in course of time, let the vicars of the monasteries, though not compelled by necessity or circomstances,exchange letters amoung themselves communicating the good news here and enquiring about the needs of other others and render any help that might be required (vol. 4, 100).

3- Not man-made:

a Beloved brother, this congregation of ours is not man-make. You are witness to the truth that God has nurtured it with genuine care and helped it to grow. Persecution by men or discourgements from them cannot destroy it. But one thing can cause its distraction. It happens if we forget our holy vocation and neglect the sacred duties of our state and fail in humility, charity, religious modesty and genuine devotion and are satisfied with valuing them only in spirit and not in deeds(vol- 4, 90).

4-Thapasa Bhavanam:

Seeing that a lot of good has not been done due to the absence of Thapasa Bhavanam (House of Discipline) in Kerala even for the priest, it was desired by all means to start a Darsana Veedu (House of Vision) at least for priests.(vol-1,1).

5-Purpose of our call:

Jesus Christ, the Divine Master has called you to follow his footsteps, by purchasing your soul and the souls of your brethren with His precious blood, to save you from sin and make you an instrument of salvation for othres; and make virtuous and through you to make other virtuous, thus to unite you all with him.

6- Model of the first Christian Community:

As there exited a deep spiritual brotherhood among us and because we wanted to have fellowship also in the things of the body similar to the spiritual fellowship, we decided to put together all our material earnings and the fruits thereof belonging to us, following the example showed by St. Peter in the beginning as a replica and foundation stone (Vol.1, 208).

7- Spiritual Reading and Mystical Union:

I wish that all of you listen to and learn this little advice. The straight way to the summit of perfection and the means not to tumble down from the hight is simply this: avoid wasting your time in useless conversation. The time you save after your proper work and recreation should be spent in spiritual reading. It nourishes a religious with love and enables him to enjoy solitude and when a soul delights in solitude, Jesus Christ will come to converse with it. At first you will not understand the language. Then it is the Lord himself who will lead you to the wine -celler and pour out some wine for you- a little at first. In the course of time you will begin to understand the language. When your spouse sees that you understand his speech, he will speak more and more distinctly and show you the magnitude of His love. Then the bride will love him more and the bridegroom will rejoice over it and adorn her with ornaments. Thus commences the divine union. Consider how sweet the voice of your loving spouse is. He is always accompanying you wherever you are, looking for all your needs and watching whether you love him more than anything else. Then on there will be nothing to fear. This is the clear way to spiritual life and perfection ( Voll.4,116,117). //-