Suffering
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A presentation teaching the Catholic view of suffering and the problem of pain.

A presentation teaching the Catholic view of suffering and the problem of pain.

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Suffering Suffering Presentation Transcript

  • R.C.I.A. February 27, 2008
  • The Big Question?
    • Why pain?
    • Why Suffering?
    • We all experience this state of the human condition.
    • How can we reconcile the existence of a God who is all good and all powerful with the fact that suffering and evil are real?
  • Mystery of Suffering
    • Church views suffering as a mystery.
    • The Scriptures shed much light on the subject.
    • Christ’s life, Passion, and death provide even more meaning behind the mystery of suffering.
  • How the question has been answered
    • Basic statements
      • God exists
      • God is good
      • God is all-powerful
      • Evil exist
  • Answers to the Problem
    • #1 God exists
    • #2 God is good
    • #3 God is all powerful
    • #4 Evil exists
    • Atheism – denial of #1
    • Pantheism – denial of #2
    • Polytheism – denial of #3
    • Idealism – denial of #4
  • The Christian Answer
    • Begins in the Old Testament with the fall.
    • The book of Job picks up the issue “Why do good things happen to bad people?”
    • Gospel – Response of Christ to suffering.
  • Understanding the Christian Answer
    • Two Common Misconceptions
      • 1. Evil things exist: - there is nothing physically that is evil. An example –
        • The attack with the pen
          • Pen is good
          • Swing is good
          • Aim is good
          • The will – that contains the problem – my choice
          • Evil is depravation of good.
      • 2. Moral vs. Physical Evil
  • Understanding ….
    • # 2: Moral vs. Physical Evil
      • Sin = moral evil – corruption of free will
      • Suffering = physical evil resulting from corrupting effect of sin in the world.
  • Suffering
    • Origin of Evil
      • Creation – Fall of Angels
      • Fall of Adam and Eve
        • Natural Order is corrupted
        • Corruption of natural order leads to suffering
        • Disease etc. begins
  • View of Suffering at the time of Christ
    • People suffer because they deserve it.
    • Jesus changes this view
      • Luke 13:1-5 Jesus addresses the crowd and speaks of the 18 who were killed when the tower of Siloam collapses. - “Do you think they were worse offenders?”
    • Old view is still present – in some parts of the world
      • My friend Mario…
    • Overcoming the old view
  • Christ changes everything
    • Where is God in the problem of suffering?
    • Is he silent? Is he distant? The great clockmaker?
    • No
      • God becomes incarnate and suffers beside us. He comes down and embraces fully the condition we are in and even endures death on a Cross laying down his life for us.
      • Two Friends on a log - example
  • Why death?
    • Why does Christ have to suffer and die?
    • Why does it have to be Christ?
  • Why Jesus?
    • Infinite gap has been created by sin.
    • Our choice leads to distance between God and us.
    • Only someone who is human and divine can bridge that gap?
  • Why death?
    • Why not snap his fingers?
    • Covenant had been entered into.
    • Only way out of a covenant is death.
    • At Christ’s death the Gospel’s record the significant event?
      • Temple vale torn in two
      • Earth quake etc.
      • Josephus records the temple gate collapsed
  • Entering into risen life
    • Through our Baptism we die and rise with Christ.
    • Suffering then can become transformative when we unite our sufferings with the Cross of Christ.
    • Redemptive Suffering
      • Our suffering unites us with Christ
      • St. Paul’s theology – (Colossians) are sufferings help others in the Church when offered up.
      • Value of human dignity affirmed.
  • Faith and Suffering
    • Christianity does not mean one will never suffer. Not the wealth and health gospel.
    • Christ urges us to take up our Cross.
      • Story of a saint and the cross.
    • Only Suffer what we can handle.
    • God brings good out of suffering and evil.
      • Good out of bad? Examples?
    • We will see clearly in the end.
  • Quote on Suffering
    • “ God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
    • C.S. Lewis
  • Continue Learning
  • Credits
    • Photo Credits
      • Slide 1: From Flickr
        • Sweet suffering http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeffelix69/1601991315/
        • Iraq Wars Windows of Suffering #13 http://www.flickr.com/photos/david_lewis_baker_arts/1387771444/
        • Iraq Wars Windows of Suffering # 10 http://www.flickr.com/photos/david_lewis_baker_arts/1386881071/
      • Slide 2: From Flickr
        • Iraq Wars Windows of Suffering #18 http://www.flickr.com/photos/david_lewis_baker_arts/1386880001/
  • Credits
    • Slide 3
      • Suffering Virgin http://www.flickr.com/photos/colodio/1235108140/
    • Slide 4
      • The Suffering http://www.flickr.com/photos/colodio/1235108140/
    • Slide 5
      • Belson Cross http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmic/264898981/
    • Slide 9 Kiss Angel Wings http://www.flickr.com/photos/d_saygoodbye/134728515
    • Slide 12 the cross http://www.flickr.com/photos/d_saygoodbye/134728515/Jesus , Isa, Christ, http://www.flickr.com/photos/d_saygoodbye/134728515/