A few days ago I wrote a short article about the church, as described in the Vatican II document "Lumen Gentium."
However, following the document "Lumen Gentium" (Light of the people) that explained the church, there was another document written at that same Vatican Council by the name of Guadium et Spes (Hope and Joy), that explained how the church should related to the people of the world.
This document identified the condition of Humanity in the world today
* Hope vs Anguish
* Changes in social orders
* Changes in attitudes, morals, and religion
* Imbalances in the world
* Broader aspirations of human kind
* Humanities deeper questioning
There was a deep questioning and evaluation of The dignity of the human person.
* Women and Men created in the image of God
*Humanities essential nature
* Dignity of the intellect, truth, wisdom, and moral conscience.
* The excellence of Freedom
* Mystery of death
* Systematic atheism
The Human Community was evaluated
* Communitarian nature of the human vocation: God's design
* How the Person and Society are interdependent
* The common good
* Respect for the Human person
* Essential equality of all: Social Justice
* The need to transcend an individualistic Mortality
The role of the Church in the modern world was clarified
* Mutual relationship of the church and world
* What the church can offer to individuals, society, and human activity through its members
* What the church receives form the world
* Christ being the Alpha and the Omega
Some Urgent issues were identified and evaluated
* Marriage and the family in the modern world
* The holiness of marriage
* Married Love
*The fruitfulness of marriage
* Married love and respect for human life
* Fostering Marriage and the family: A duty for all
The proper development of Culture
* New forms of Living
* Difficulties and duties
* Faith and Culture
* Relations between culture and the Good News of Christ
* Proper harmony between forms of culture
Economic and Social Life
*Work, working culture, and leisure
* Earthly goods destined for all
* Ownership and private property
* Economic and Social activity and the Kingdom of God
The Political Community
* Modern Public Life
* Nature and purpose of the political community
* Participation by all in public life
* The political community and the church
The Fostering of Peace
* Curbing the savages of war
* The arms race
* Role of Christians and international aid
* Effective presence of the church in the international community
* Role of Christians in the international Organizations
My Own Personal Reflection
I think it is very important for pastors, clergy, and leaders to recognise 'The signs of the times," being able to interpret them and direct others toward resolution, peace, love, and Joy.
What our world is currently experiencing is a global deterioration of the Family, Marriage, and the dignity of the human person.
Divorce rates soaring to 50% equates that a commitment really is not a commitment, and the holiness of two becoming one is not really two becoming one, these marriages have lost the idea of being sacramental and filled with grace....
Children being raised by one of two parents, always having an insecure feeling, lack of love and care continues to grow.
Abortion: the total disregard for the dignity of a human being. Murder!
Birth Control: Meaning, I want to feel good by having relations with you, married or not, but unwilling to give all of me to you, holding back.......not being open to the miraculous nature of creation. This holding back never allows the total and free giving of oneself to their partner and is what is to be considered the holiest of holy relationship here on earth.
Our disregard for the elderly. Once they become what many feel is unable to contribute to society, they do not carry a worth. They are neglected and avoided.
Our lack of compassion for the hungry and starving. The wealth of the world continues to grow yet there are still millions of people who are starving to death.
Pornography continues to be growing at a rate that is almost untrackable. The dignity of the human being has been lost and reduced to just an object for pleasure. The holiness of the person and human relationship has been lost.
The perversion of homosexuality and the efforts to spew the rhetoric that it is not only acceptable, but should be fostered continues to undermine Christianity and culture. This sinful act is sinful and it destroys not only the idea of marriage, but is incapable of any procreation and is completely contrary to the natural law. It takes away from society the dignity of the Husband, Wife, Children, Family, and Marriage.
All of this can be changed through the grace of God and through our efforts to make a difference in this world that we live in.
We should be reminded: The Church's (People of God) mission is to go into the world and serve it with the message of Jesus' Good News.
We are to be Men and Women of not only prayer, but of action.........
As the Body of Christ, we are to be the leaders in bringing Hope and Joy into the world.