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What makes us Christians is following Jesus. Nothing else. This following of Jesus isn’t something theoretical or abstract. It means following his footsteps, committing ourselves as he did to «make life more human», and live that way, contributing to what, little by little, is making real his project of a world where God and God’s justice reigns.

This means to say that we followers of Jesus are called to put truth where there are lies, to introduce justice where there are abuses and cruelty of the weakest, to reclaim compassion where there’s indifference in the face of those who suffer. And this demands constructing communities where Jesus’ project is being lived out with his spirit and his attitudes.

To thus follow Jesus carries with it conflicts, problems, and suffering. You need to be ready to take on the reactions and resistance of those who for one reason or another don’t seek a more human world, the way that God incarnate in Jesus wants. They want something else.

The Gospels have conserved Jesus’ realistic call to his followers. What’s scandalous in the image can only come from him: «If someone wants to come after me… let him take up his cross and follow me». Jesus doesn’t deceive them. If they follow him truly, they will have to share his destiny. They will end up like him. That will be the best proof that their following is faithful.

To follow Jesus is a passionate task: it’s difficult to imagine a more valuable and noble life. But it has a price. To follow Jesus it’s important to «make»: make a world more just and human; make a Church more faithful to Jesus and more in line with the Gospel. However it’s as important, or more so, to «suffer»: suffer for a more dignified world; suffer for a Church that is more Gospel based.

At the end of his life, the theologian Karl Rahner wrote this: «I believe that to be Christian is the easiest task, the simplest and at the same time, that heavy “light burden” that the Gospel talks about. When you carry it, it carries you, and the longer you live, that much heavier and lighter it will come to be. In the end there remains only the mystery. But it’s the mystery of Jesus».


José Antonio Pagola

 Translator: Fr. Jay VonHandorf

Publicado en www.gruposdejesus.com

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