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Follow Jesus


This, then, is the first challenge of Easter.

christman We are summoned to begin the journey inward and upward, toward the hidden, true reality, and we must find that it is reality.  We can only have faith in the Risen One if we have encountered him.  We can only encounter him by following him.  Only if both things are true of us can we bear witness to him and carry his light into this world.

One of the psalms of Israel, which the Church understands as a psalm of the Passion of Jesus Christ and which she long prayed at the beginning of every Mass, is this: "Give me justice, O God."  It is the cry of a world in the midst of suffering.  Give me justice, O God!

And he has said Yes.  Christ is risen!  What was past and beyond recall has been recalled.  The power of transformation is available to us.  Let our lives be one whole movement toward it!  Let us seek the things that are above!



benedict Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger. "Following Jesus." from Seek That Which Is Above: Meditations through the Year (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1986).

Reprinted with permission from Ignatius Press.

The Author

Benedict73smBenedict72Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger/Pope Benedict XVI is the author of Jesus of Nazareth, Vol II, Jesus of Nazareth, Vol I, Caritas in Veritate: Charity in Truth, Saved in Hope: Spe Salvi, God Is Love: Deus Caritas Est,The End of Time?: The Provocation of Talking about God, Truth and Tolerance: Christian Belief and World Religions, Without Roots: The West, Relativism, Christianity, Islam, Salt of the Earth: An Exclusive Interview on the State of the Church at the End of the Millennium, God and the World: Believing and Living in Our Time, In the Beginning: A Catholic Understanding of the Story of Creation and the Fall, The Spirit of the Liturgy, The Ratzinger Report: An Exclusive Interview on the State of the Church, Introduction to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Introduction to Christianity, Called to Communion: Understanding the Church Today, Milestones: Memoirs 1927-1977, Behold the Pierced One, and God Is Near Us: The Eucharist, the Heart of Life.

Copyright © 1986 Ignatius Press
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