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The Power of a Seed

  • CARDINAL RANIERO CANTALAMESSA, O.F.M. CAP.

Natural scientists and botanists fall back in amazement at all the things contained within one tiny seed that science is ever increasingly bringing to light.


seedsjjIf all the information contained in one seed had to be put down in writing, you would end up with something like an encyclopedia.  Everything in it is programmed in the minutest particular. 

A natural computer comes to mind, containing an incalculable mass of data in its memory bank: when and how to flower, what fruit to produce of what color and flavor, of what dimensions, how to react to this or that external agent, how to adapt to a change of climate.  Sometimes all these pieces of information remain active for centuries, if it is true (as is said) that grains of wheat still alive and able to germinate have been found in the ancient pyramids of Egypt.

The revealed message is also a seed.  Jesus himself compares it to the smallest of all seeds (Mt 13:32) and compares himself to a grain of wheat sown in the ground (Jn 12:24).  Like the seed, the message hides unsuspected resources within itself, which after two thousand years we are far from having finished exploring.  In the New Testament kerygma [proclamation] about Jesus Christ there are in-built pieces of information which allow it to burst into flower at any stage of history, to acclimatize itself in every culture, without ever belying itself or changing its nature.

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Acknowledgement

cantalamessaCardinal Raniero Cantalamessa, O.F.M. Cap. excerpt from Jesus Christ, The Holy One of God (Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 1991)

Reprinted under a fair use provision.

Photo from Francesco Gallarotti from Unsplash.

The Author

cantalamessacantalamessa1 Cardinal Raniero Cantalamessa, O.F.M. Cap. is a Franciscan Capuchin Priest. In 1980 he was appointed by Pope John Paul II Preacher to the Papal Household and confirmed in that position by pope Benedict XVI in 2005. He is the author of many books including Jesus Christ, The Holy One of GodThe Gaze of Mercy, A Commentary on Divine and Human Mercy Life in the Lordship of Christ: A Commentary on Paul's Epistle to the Romans, Sober Intoxication of the Spirit: Filled With the Fullness of God,  Beatitudes: Eight Steps to Happiness, Serving the Word: My Life, and Life in the Lordship of Christ: A Commentary on Paul's Epistle to the Romans.

Copyright © 1991 Liturgical Press
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