This is the true meaning and value of suffering, of the pain which is physical, moral and spiritual. This is the Good News which I wish to pass on to you. To our human questioning, the Lord responds with a call, with a special vocation which is grounded in love. Christ comes to us not with explanations and reasons which might either anaesthetize or alienate us. Instead, he comes to us saying: "Come with me. Follow me on the way of the Cross. The Cross is suffering". "Whoever wants to be a follower of mine, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me" (Lk 9:29). Jesus Christ has taken the lead on the way of the Cross. He has suffered first. He does not drive us towards suffering but shares it with us, wanting us to have life and to have it in abundance (cf. Jn 10:10).
Sunday, March 21, 2010
Consecration: The suffering of Christ.
Week Three, Day Four
from John Paul II's address to Cubans at the Shrine of St. Lazarus
"'Christ does not explain in some abstract way the reasons for suffering, but says first of all: 'Follow me', 'Come', with your suffering share in this work of salvation of the world, which is realized through my suffering, by means of my Cross' (Salvifici Doloris, n. 26).