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“He Who Has Come; He Who Is To Come”

Jesus Christ is he “who has come,” but also the one “who is to come.” Both aspects, neither contradict nor cancel out each other, but rather, in an eternal dialectic, complement each other, walking hand in hand towards the “plenitude.” (Eph 1:23)

Consider a medieval castle built upon an almost inaccessible cliff. When we look at it from the plain, it looks like a ship. We observe it from a gorge and it looks like a nest of eagles. If we enter its interior, everything is nothing but ruins. Now, which one is the real castle? All the angles and facets or appearances of the castle are true, yet incomplete.

Jesus Christ, though perfect and accomplished in himself, will always be, for us, incomplete and inexhaustible. When the curtain of history falls, it is then that He will be completely fulfilled; or better said, when He will reach full stature, then the curtain of history will fall. In the meantime, the Church will always be at the stage of adolescence, always growing.

Whoever meets Him in midstream will come back with an image on his retina, an original image, always different. In the measure that different images are superimposed upon each other, a photograph of Christ will go on becoming more complete. There is no doubt, for example, that the Christian reflection of the African continent will bring in original nuances to the figure of Christ. Surely too, Christ contemplated from a Third World perspective will offer a different face.

In the meantime, neither races with an analytic mind, nor ancestors of peoples of long ago, nor all the enlightened centuries will succeed in realizing the vastness of the mystery of Christ in its totality. Souls of star stature like Francis of Assisi or Teilhard de Chardin, not even they, with their awe-truck eyes, would be able to span the dimensions of the inscrutable richness of Christ.

From the book The Poor One of Nazareth by Fr. Ignacio Larrañaga


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