Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Body Work

I started a class last night, to study John Paul II's Theology of the Body. It will meet at the Catholic Information Center every other Monday. It was a nice group of about twenty people, led by a woman who took me for a brother or a theology student. It can happen.

People like to talk about it, but few know what it is exactly. Here's the short explanation:

"The theology of the body is Pope John Paul II's integrated vision of the human person, body, soul and spirit. He tells us how the physical human body has a specific meaning and how it shows us the answers to basic questions of life such as: Is there a real purpose to life and if so, what is it? Why were we created male and female - and does it really matter if you're one sex or another? Why were man and woman called to communion from the beginning and what does the marital union of a man and woman say to us about God and his plan for our lives? What is the purpose of the married and celibate vocations? What exactly is love? Is it truly possible to be pure of heart? All of these questions and many more are answered in Pope John Paul II's 129 Wednesday audiences which were given between the years 1979 and 1984. His reflections are based on Scripture (especially the Gospels, St. Paul and the Book of Genesis) and contain a vision of the human person truly worthy of man. They discuss who man was in the beginning, who he is now, after sin, and who he will be in the age to come. He then applies this understanding to the vocations of marriage and celibacy for the Kingdom."

The rest can be found at the website linked with the above quotation. Of particular interest to me is a website dedicated to his 1960 book Love and Responsibility. I hope to study that work as well. Someday.

But for now, the class has been most promising. It is like food to a starving man, to be among those who are "on the same page," as it were, with so many things. You connect with those who are seekers like yourself, and next thing you know, it is as if you have known each other for much longer. I belong here alright.

Meanwhile, my cousin and his wife in Connecticut had a little boy yesterday, their second. I called today, and talked to her mother. I'm hoping to be up that way on Thanksgiving. I'll be on the road to Rochester, to visit where I'd been before.

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