I. “Who do you say that I am?” The question Jesus asked the first disciples echoes through every age, as the risen Christ continues to address that question to each person. How we respond does not define his life; it defines ours.
In 2012, the Church observed a Year of Faith. Its purpose was to renew our living relationship with Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Redeemer of the World, a lived answer to that question asked in the very center of the Gospel of Mark. Eight years later, and with much change in our Church and world, that same relationship is still our goal. The Church exists for no other reason than to communicate and foster this relationship with the risen Jesus.
Back then, I updated a series of reflections on the Person and mission of Jesus that I first wrote in 2006. It outlined the section of the Catechism of the Catholic Church on “Christology” on the study of Christ (nn. 422-682). Reading it today, I find it all true, but I realize that you would probably be better served by simply reading the Catechism.
In 2007, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI published the first volume of Jesus of Nazareth: From the Baptism in the Jordan to the Transfiguration. Volume II (on the Passion and Resurrection) and Volume III (on the Infancy Narratives) followed in 2011 and 2012. They are a remarkable, prayerful reading of the Scriptural accounts of Jesus and the rich tapestry of God’s Word – prophecies, foreshadowing, and incidents from the Hebrew Scriptures – made flesh in Christ. In the coming weeks, I want to share some highlights of the retired Pope’s insights that have been meaningful to me, and I hope they will inspire you as well.