The Personalist Project

Today's Magnificat includes a beautiful and highly personalist quotation from Pope Emeritus Benedict on the Ascension and its promise for humanity.

The meaning of Christ's Ascension," writes Pope Benedict XVI, "expresses our belief that in Christ the humanity that we all share has entered into the inner life of God in a new and hitherto unheard of way.  It means that man has found an everlasting place in God."  It would be a mistake to interpret the Ascension as "the temporary absence of Christ from the world." Rather, "we go to heaven to the extent that we go to Jesus Christ and enter into him." Heaven is a person. "Jesus himself is what we call 'heaven'."

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Comments (3)

Marcus Otte

#1, May 9, 2013 6:34pm

Beautiful. Reminds me of something he writes in Jesus of Nazareth; he says that the "Kingdom of Heaven" or "Kingdom of God" referred to in the Gospels has three meanings, one of which is Jesus Himself, as when Our Lord said, "Behold, the Kingdom of God is suddenly upon you."

Sam Roeble

#2, May 10, 2013 9:03am

I dare to take it a step further and say "heaven is 3 Persons"!

Sam Roeble

#3, May 10, 2013 10:15am

The godfather of my newborn son studies personalism at Mundeiline Seminary in Chicago.  He introduced me to St. Augustine's De Personas Trinitatae recently, and argued that personhood stems from the triune Persons of the Blessed Trinity.  "Let us make man in our image..."

In a mysterious way, I experienced this reality in my son's baptism two weeks ago.  He has the Trinity within him now!

The face of Heaven is Jesus, and although the Trinity dwells within us--our entire lives are a quest for the face of God beyond us.  It almost sounds too easy, until I consider the wounds that Jesus brought to his Father at the Ascension, and the cry of abandonment he spoke on the cross.  How can the Trinity be so risky? 

My son is no longer an orphan in God's family--and yet, he will always strive to be fully adopted, fully integrated, fully vulnerable to the 'slings and arrows' of this world--for the sake of personally seeing God's face.  

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