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Monday, 10 December 2012

The Age-Old Question of Suffering and Our Grief

Why are the people of the Philippines being racked with yet another twist of the hurricane? Why has Japan experienced more earthquakes? Why is there famine in Somalia periodically?

We can understand war as a suffering as it is caused by people. We can understand financial recessions and depressions as well to a certain extent, as caused by people? What we have a hard time understanding are natural disasters such as drought, earthquakes and hurricanes.

Years ago, after Katrina, (and I went down to help for a while but got very ill), then priest, now Bishop Gerhard Wagner, said that the storm was retribution for serious sin. The press had a field day.

But, we must consider that we all and nature as well, suffer the results of Original Sin.

What does this mean? I got cancer. Adam's sin brought illness into the world. Japan had a tsunami. Original Sin destroyed the Divine balance of nature.

Just as we experience concupiscence even after baptism, so too nature is in disarray.

St. Paul states that: For we know that every creature groaneth and travaileth in pain, even till now. Romans 8:22 DR.

Like those who suffer from poverty or loneliness or pain of any sort, nature experiences a lack of order.
We cannot imagine the immensity of that First Sin. It was huge enough an event to cause God to become Man and die for our sins, freeing us from the consequences of Original Sin.

The denial of Original Sin is one of the most common heresies in the Church today. It is called in history Pelagianism, the home-grown British heresy very common in Britain today, started by a man named Pelagius in the 5th century. It was condemned in no less than four councils: Carthage from 412-418; Ephesus, 431; )
Orange 529; Trent, 1546.

The main reason people, even some lapsed Catholics do not baptise their children is the belief that all children are naturally good without grace. Pelagianists think that the will can choose good alone without the help of sanctifying grace. They deny concupiscence. They deny the weakening of the will as one of the results of Original Sin.

Nature, too, grieves at the Fall. We cannot imagine a perfect world. We cannot imagine animals at peace and in harmony with humans. We can hardly imagine perfection.

We have Our Lady and Christ to Whom to appeal for insight and knowledge. We have the Church which gives us grace. We shall never see nature at peace. When Christ comes again, it will be at the end of the world.

That we did not witness the earth before the Fall is part of our present grief. But, in heaven, all grief is healed and consoled.

Photos Copywrite© of Mike Hollingshead
except first

And check out this video-this is in Nebraska.