Vicar’s Message

Vicar’s Message

Rev. Shiby Varughese P.

Dearly beloved in Christ,

Snow clogs and closed roads, but it also turns lonely hills into slopes for sledding. Snow is the possibility of a new landscape. The aesthetic description of snow has appeared in poems, short stories, novels, biographies and has a dramatic use as metaphor and symbol. Snow falls gently and silently. A snowflake needs at least two components: water and earth – earth being the particles, and the water being the droplets.

The mystique of snow is precisely because of its dual quality of heaven meeting earth, water meeting land. Snowflakes gently dropping from heaven, blanketing earth in its white embrace, are the touch of the Divine and the mundane. The spiritual dimension of snow serves as an intermediary between Divine energy and the universe. Earth is the material world and water is the knowledge of God. Thus snow, being half heaven and half earth provides the perfect intermediary between these two worlds.

Jesus Christ as the constant center and abiding substance of Christian faith and life. Christianity is founded on the principles and practices of the crucified Christ. The man from Nazareth, without any office and dignities, had proclaimed the kingdom of God. Jesus never created a special exclusive community with its own creed and cult, its own constitution and ministries. In other words, according to Hans Kung (theologian), Jesus had sparked off a great eschatological collective movement. Christianity is called to be a community of self-conscious people who have transcended all of the boundaries that divide, discriminate and demotivate people. It is also called to be a community of people committed to a journey into the future going beyond even “the cloud of unknowing.”

Christian faith is distinguished by the rite of initiation: that of baptism and the meal instituted by Christ. Jesus Christ initiated the baptism of redemption and gifted to humanity through crucifixion and resurrection. For St Paul the experience of salvation is gifted through “grace” (Eph 2:8). Crucified Christ heals the sickness of our life. Sin is sickness and salvation is healing; healing through word of God, fellowship and invisible touch.

Faith community is moving out of the spirit of salvation, fueled with the trends of the capitalistic spirituality of “performances”. Projection, productivity and procuring have been the common habit of our spiritual activities. We are driven by the waves of irreligious, irrational, undemocratic and unjust systems of functioning.

Imagining a church with roots, branches and fruits is our challenge; branches connect the fruits with the roots. Love, compassion and justice are the branches that help any church to survive. Survival of the competent should not be the spirituality cultivated in a church.

Church has to embody the expression of the survival of the common. Cross is the tree of life and salvation.

Church having the mediation of the Christ bears the mark of Cross. Great Lent is the sacred time to remember and thank God for His son Jesus Christ who carried the burden of sin and suffering.

As parish let’s prepare for the Lent with prayers, reading of the scripture and sharing the love to the people around.

Wish blessings of God,
Shiby Achen