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You are why we do what we do - report, describe, comment, review. It is to bring to your eyes just what life is like for believers across Asia that we publish UCAN.
But as you know, the effort needs to be sustained if it is to have continuing effect.
UCAN publishes some 150 stories a week in four languages across six websites. We are grateful to benefactors in Europe and the US who support us. But those countries and the Church there are under increasing financial strain and their generosity no longer covers our costs.
We need financial help from our readers to sustain our efforts. Our reporters, editors, video producers and photographers all have families and we need to support them. They do excellent jobs, but they can't do their jobs for nothing.
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Thanks in anticipation.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
The Call To Be A Disciple
- February 18, 2011
What is revealed now is the âcost of discipleshipâ. It means that the disciple must follow Jesus by disowning himself and taking up his cross. Everyone knew what âcarrying the crossâ implied: they had seen brigands and political prisoners dragging their cross to the place of execution in this most shameful and painful of Roman punishments. But what does giving up of oneâs self mean? How does one disown oneself? It meant that the self has no value in front of Godâs will. Therefore what God wants must always take precedence over what our natural inclination would be.
Our natural inclination is to expand the claims of self, through wealth and power, through knowledge and influence or âto win the whole worldâ as the Gospel terms it. It often happens that in doing so we give up what God wants of us. We lose sight of our âtrue selfâ in the pursuit of temporal ambition. So, the Gospel asks, of what use is it to win the whole world at the cost of our true self?
The reward for clinging to our true self will come to us at the end of time, when we are acknowledged and praised by Christ in glory and in the company of his angels â a symbolic way of saying that this fulfillment is the result of being true to ourselves, in spite of the difficulties and sufferings that we encountered every day as we carry our cross through life.
The predictions of his forthcoming passion which Jesus makes, and by implication, the kind of life his disciple is called to, will be repeated again and again on his journey to Jerusalem. This actual journey had a deeper meaning; it indicated the purpose of Jesusâs life. Not fame and power, but a painful and infamous death, which God would transform into a life-giving experience, the resurrection.