August 31, 2009
Monday of 22nd Week in Course
Caritas in Veritate
Without a transcendent vision of the human person, without the vital link to God, there can be no true human development. What development is planned is “entrusted exclusively to man, who falls into the trap of thinking he can bring about his own salvation, and ends up promoting a dehumanized form of development.” In the encounter with God, with Jesus, the Bridegroom and the true form of authentic human development, we are enabled to see in the other human person something more than just another creature, just a mass of flesh and bone. When we recognize “the divine image in the other,” we will come to discover him or her and mature in a love that becomes true concern and caring.
St. Paul and Jesus are both very clear in their teaching about marriage. The will of God is our sanctification, our true development. God became human so that humans could become divine. For most of us, the path to sanctification, to holiness, is the sacrament of marriage. Addressing the men of Thessalonika, Paul writes that the path to holiness, the path away from unchaste behavior, is taking a wife in holiness and honor, not in the “passion of lust like heathen who do not know God.” Anything else is an injustice to the brotherhood. The so-called “development” of marriage into unnatural unions is literally dehumanizing. It is a legitimation of sexual abuse and perversion. God has not called us to uncleanness. God has called us to holiness, to present to the world an image of the loving union of Christ and the Church.
Pope Paul VI warned about the danger “constituted by utopian and ideological visions that place the ethical and human dimensions [of politics] in jeopardy.” These negative ideologies continue to flourish, as a technocratic utopian plan. We cannot entrust the entire process of development to technology, because technology is a means, not an end, one that lacks direction. Pope Benedict warns against this and against a kind of Luddite wholesale rejection of development and science. Science, “if well used, could serve as an opportunity of growth for all. The idea of a world without development indicates a lack of trust in man and in God.” As always, true virtue “lies in the middle.”