Sunday, May 31, 2015

Happiness: a By-product of a Life Well Lived

Today,Trinity Sunday, the editorial in the Peace Weekly reminds us that a true understanding of our faith is a short cut to happiness. Strange that we have to be reminded of this but there are good reasons why this seems necessary.

Humans were made to be happy. What we do and think will determine whether we are happy or not. In the Catechism of the Catholic Church we hear: "The Beatitudes respond to the natural desire for happiness. This desire is of divine origin: God has placed it in the human heart in order to draw man to the One who alone can fulfill it."

On Trinity Sunday we talk about God who is love, sending the Word in love who is Jesus, who in turn  sends us the Spirit  to instruct and lead us so that we will have joy now and forever. We  forget this basic teaching which is that we were made to be happy now and forever.

The editorial mentions that today in Korea we also celebrate Youth Sunday.The young people are not happy. They study with great effort to get into college, achieved they have to find work, and then romance, marriage and raising a family, this package of three in many cases has to be  postponed.

Young people are not getting the courage and consolation from their attendance at Masses, and  consequently they are leaving the Church. They are not finding  answers they need.

In the editorial mention is made of the message of Pope Francis to the youth of the world. He  stresses true happiness. “Dear young men and women, in Christ you find fulfilled your every desire for goodness and happiness,” continues the Holy Father. “He alone can satisfy your deepest longings, which are so often clouded by deceptive worldly promises.”

Youth is a time of storm and stress. They have not found their  place in life, are uncomfortable, and  open to all kinds of temptations. What is kernel and what is the shell are not  easy to discover, and to find the truth in their faith life is not easy.

Pope Francis  earnestly entreats  they never forget  that God wants their happiness.  For a Christian happiness is not only the object of life but also our duty, and the easiest way to achieve happiness is living our religious life.

The problem that arises is that the happiness that is given is not in the way the world gives, and here is the difficulty that many of the young do not  understand--it is not found by searching for it.  A Christian paradox which apparently few understand and one of the most important. 

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