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Lent Retreat - Week 2, Wednesday

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

In a recent interview the Chancellor of the Exchequer , Alistair Darling, claimed that the Prime Minister had, in 2008, ordered that "the forces of Hell" be unleashed upon him after he had forecast the worst recession for 60 years. Whilst Mr. Darling might have been slightly poetic about the No. 10 spin and smear machine, there is some truth to this statement. This type of governance, the rule of realpolitik and the strategy of command and conquer, is in opposition to the regime of Christ. The Kingdom of Christ turns these worldly values on their heads. Greatness in the Kingdom is not based on power, reputation and fear but on service. A place in the Kingdom is not found through wielding authority but by yielding to the only true authority: God.

This is not an easy thing to accept. The values of the Kingdom and the world will be, and always have been, at odds. The world can not accept nor understand the values of the Kingdom and in fear will try to extinguish them. The plots and conspiracies mentioned in today's readings are very apt in the current cultural climate. In Britain and throughout the west, Christianity and its values are under attack from numerous directions: from secularists to neo-liberals, gaiaists to eugenicists, and even from within the Church itself. This is not a new thing. The Church and our salvation are founded on the attempt to stamp out the Truth and quench the Light of the world on Golgotha. Over the centuries numerous attempts have been made to dowse the flames of the Kingdom but it is, to paraphrase The Smiths, "a Light that will never go out"!

Lent offers us an opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to the Kingdom. Like Jesus in the desert, we reject Satan's empty promises. We reject the ways of the world and choose to drink from the same cup as Christ. It is only through sharing in His suffering, mockery and death, that we will be able to share in His resurrection and Kingdom.

Mark Davoren


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