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Thought for the weekend

Fr Patrick McCafferty


'The word "baptise" is from a Greek word meaning literally "to soak".'

'The word "baptise" is from a Greek word meaning literally "to soak".'

'The word "baptise" is from a Greek word meaning literally "to soak".'

Jesus expresses the radical nature and stark demands of our discipleship as follows: we are to take up our cross and follow in His footsteps if we are to be worthy of Him (Matthew 10:38).

As Christians, we are to be submerged entirely in Christ, to such an extent, as described by St Paul, that "when we were baptised we went into the tomb with Him and joined Him in death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the Father's glory, we too might live a new life" (Romans 6:3-4).

The word "baptise" is from a Greek word meaning literally "to soak". Our baptism is our immersion in the life of the Most Holy Trinity.

We are joined to Christ, by the Holy Spirit, becoming, with Christ, children of the Father.

When our Heavenly Father looks on us, He sees us as images of His only begotten, well-beloved Son (Romans 8:29). This calls for our complete transformation, in Christ, at every level of who we are.

No inner door, no secret area of our minds and hearts, must be closed to Christ and the demands of truly belonging to Him, so that we are "worthy" of Him, as He says.

What we aspire towards, by God's grace, is the merging of our lives with the Life of Christ.

It is to belong entirely and completely to Him and, through His Holy Spirit, to carry out the Father's will, as Jesus did.

In teaching us how to pray perfectly, Jesus gives us the petition: "Thy Will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven" (Matthew 6:10).

It is not those who say to Him, "Lord, Lord" who will enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but those who do His Father's will (Matthew 7:21).

For these are the ones who build God's Kingdom of justice, love, truth and peace, here and now.

In a real sense, if we are truly walking in Jesus' footsteps, carrying our cross, we have already overcome death and risen with Christ and are living, here and now, the life of Heaven.

A radical detachment from this world is expected of us, so that we can live in the freedom of God's Spirit, as God's children.

The children of God, with Jesus, in the power of the Holy Spirit, are bringing about the new Heaven and the new Earth, which is our Father's Will and plan, to restore all creation in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Belfast Telegraph