Thursday, January 7, 2010

Pope Benedict on the new year

(I meant to post this several days ago, but couldn't find it until just now.)

...For a moment we become conscious of the strange thing called "time," which otherwise we simply use without thinking about it. We feel both the melancholy and the consolation of our own transiency. Much that caused us distress, much that weighed us down and seemed to make progress impossible, has now passed and become quite unimportant. As we look back, difficult days are transfigured in memory, and the now almost forgotten distress leaves us more peaceful and confident, more composed in the face of current threats, for these too will pass. The consolation of transiency: Nothing lasts, and therefore along with the old year not only difficulties but much that is beautiful has passed away... We cannot say to any moment: "Stay awhile! You are so lovely!" Anything that is within time comes and then passes away.
...A new beginning is something precious; it brings hope and possibilities as yet undisclosed... What can we as Christians say at this moment of transition? First of all, we can do the very human thing the moment urges upon us: we can use the time of reflection in order to stand aside and widen our vision, thus gaining inner freedom and a patient readiness to move on again.
-Pope Benedict XVI
(as found in the December 31, 2008 Magnificat reflection)

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