Saturday, June 17, 2006

Viewing Love via Benedict XVI; Series of Reflections on "Deus Caritas Est"

ROME, JUNE 17, 2006 ( The many facets of Christian charity are being explored in a series of articles in the Vatican's semiofficial newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano. The ongoing series consist in reflections on Benedict XVI's encyclical, "Deus Caritas Est."

Cardinal Renato Martino, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, opened the series May 10. "Truth draws people together because it frees them from individual opinions," he wrote. "Love draws men together because it makes them overcome individual egoisms." Christianity, in turn, announces that "Truth is Love," the cardinal added.

This leads to the conclusion that Christianity is the religion of the community, and unity of humankind. This, Cardinal Martino contended, is a central message of the encyclical.

By accepting the message that God is love, people have a common foundation on which to build in order to overcome differences and break out of their own selves. The love of God not only reveals to us our own dignity, the cardinal wrote, but it also helps us understand that others possess the same dignity.

"Human society," the Vatican official stated, "is not born out of the 'mutual struggle for recognition,' but from the experience of being loved, which enables us to love others."


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