Merry Christmas to all our readers!
SHOOTING STRAIGHT - Bobit S. Avila (The Philippine Star) - December 25, 2018 - 12:00am

We will not be bothering you with today’s daily grind or our political situation, simply because it is Christmas Day and we do not have columns for Christmas all the time. I would rather use today’s column to emphasize the importance of our Lord Jesus Christ in our daily life. While we may have gotten our version of Christianity from our Spanish colonizers, but in truth, they too got it from the Christians of the olden days from the Middle East. In short, they were later Christians because the original Christians were the Jewish people, which is why we call the Jews our brothers in Christ.

So the question I’m posing to our readers is, what is our Lord Jesus Christ to you personally? When we were young, we have been taught by our grandparents what our Lord Jesus Christ was to them… and expected us to follow their lead. But as we grew older and wiser and studied our religion… only then did we come up with what the Lord Jesus Christ was for us… or what he really means for us? I had a very conservative, Catholic ancestors who devoted their lives giving praises to God and believing that the Blessed Virgin Mary was truly a “Theotokos” or Mother of God… a doctrine established a few hundred years after our Lord Jesus Christ went back to heaven. It was a doctrine established by the early Christians.

Who would expect that Christianity would end breaking up into two important groups… the Eastern Orthodoxy and mainstream Catholicism. Then when Christianity was adopted as the formal religion of the Roman Empire, it became a legitimate Church and Jesus Christ became God for most of the human race with the exception of the Muslims. So in the end, humanity developed into various civilized nations because it is the official religion of the develop world.

Christianity was adopted by mostly European nations and even developed into the Holy Roman Empire and Spain and Portugal became nations that competed with most European nations in finding other worlds to conquer. This was when Spain came to the Philippines and eventually conquered Mexico, which later became the first diocese for the Philippines. Few people realize that our Misa de Gallo came from Mexico not Spain.

Not many Catholics realize that in the year 1521 when the Philippines was supposedly discovered by Spain, it was also a year of turbulence in the Catholic Church when Martin Luther condemned many Catholic practices and created what is now the Christian or Evangelical Church. Spain and eventually Mexico spread Christianity to this part of Asia and established not only churches or parishes, but also schools of learning or universities to teach Catholicism.

So back to the question we posed… “What is our Lord Jesus Christ to us personally? For me, our Lord Jesus Christ in all the books and teachings from Christian documentaries that I read is God personified. I have simplified my faith in my own conservatism… that in the end God wins! A month ago, Europe celebrated the hundred years of the end of World War I and not a single person who attended these anniversary rights were alive to celebrate the occasion. Every important personality or lesser known individual that fought that great war were all dead! Meaning many of them are probably with God or in hell, if they lived a life worthy of being in hell!

I’m now a senior citizen and have been writing columns for at least 30 years of my life and one reality that I have truly accepted is that life is indeed a short one. I thought I would have left this world two years ago when I had a kidney problem… but somehow God allowed me to continue living until he finally decided that it is time for me to go.

My basic belief in Catholicism is that we must confess our sins when we have committed many sins… and take holy communion. Few people realize that it was our Lord Jesus Christ who established the Holy Eucharist… that in the Bread of Life Discourse in John 6: 54…Jesus said, if you take and eat his body and blood, you will have eternal life. In short this life that we live today is not our permanent home…we are expected to enter a new life after we are done with this present life.

I’m not here to debate with anyone… but this is the word of our Lord Jesus Christ and we must learn to obey him especially the Ten Commandments. This is why Catholicism believes in the Blessed Virgin Mary who gave her flesh to God and that’s the very same flesh that Jesus himself said that we should eat in order to have eternal life.

It is for this very reason that Satan and his minions up to this day try to destroy the Catholic Church that God created. But as we read in Matt. 16:18 “So now I say to you, you are Peter and upon this rock, I will build my Church and the gates of the netherworld will prevail against her.” So the Catholic Church continues to live forever despite all the attack against her.

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