Religious' Corner

saint_athanasius.jpg

I would like to propose that there are four cornerstones or elements of Dominican prayer: incarnational, sacramental, intercessional, biblical. For this week, I would Like for us to contemplate the first two. St. Athanasius' says, "For the Son of God became man so that we might become God." Because of Jesus' incarnation, there is no such thing as pure platonic evil, but a restored and transformed human nature made more perfect into the image and likeness of God. The closeness that we experience with God post-incarnation is far more than what we experienced pre-fall of Adam and Eve. Sure, we still mess things up when we choose to ignore God's will and prefer our own indulgences. However, we must not think that we are too dirty or too sinful to be transformed into the Imago Dei (image of God). Therefore, our prayer should reflect this transformation and intimacy that we have with the "Our Father."

Also, when we are conceived in our mother's womb, the Imago Dei transformation has already begun for we are made in "the image and likeness of God"(Genesis 1:27). As Catholic Christians, we also have the privilege of having the Imago Dei sealed upon our soul at Baptism and confirmed by the Holy Spirit at Confirmation. The sacraments of the Church are not magic, rather they are a visible sign of an invisible reality (St. Augustine). They are both the visible and invisible sign that the Kingdom of God has already come but has not yet been .fulfilled. As a Dominican Church Family, both our belief in the incarnation and our participation in the sacramental life of Church animates our prayer life. For without these, what is the point of prayer, save only that we were truly made to "become God."

-br. James Martin Nobles, O.P.