With the inspiration of many teachers that have helped him along the way, it was no surprise that Demetrius would develop leadership and euphonious musical talents with speed. Since , West has committed himself to the advancement of the kingdom and has assisted with many choirs, groups, soloist, and musicians.
He has travelled the length and breadth of the United States of America conducting workshops and seminars to help other ministries perfect their gifts and talents. West put together a voice choir named Jesus Promoters to accompany him on this effort. Since the inceptions of Demetrius West and Jesus Promoters JP , they have managed to become crowd pleaser to choir enthusiast alike.
And on the other side is Jesus, miserable, rejected, abandoned by his friends, turned over to this pagan by his own people.
Who has power in this situation? It's pretty obvious.
Demetrius • WebBible Encyclopedia • kaicribtemta.tk
But John says no, please understand what constitutes real power: being a loving, caring person in all circumstances of your life. Jesus showed his power by dying for others, but we weren't saved just because he died. We weren't even saved because he suffered. We were saved because he loved, and that involves suffering and sometimes death.
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When we love, we die a little bit, long before we die. If you die to yourself enough, then real dying won't be a problem, just more of the same. But if you're always protecting yourself, always clinging, then it's going to be tough. Life will have to be torn out of your grasp. Even when he is on the cross, we read almost nothing about Jesus' suffering.
He's thinking of the church, of the followers who are to come. We find at the foot of the cross the two great unnamed people in John's gospel. One is the beloved disciple, and the other is Mary, who throughout this gospel is never called "Mary," always "the mother of Jesus.
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At Cana, he had told her, "My hour has not yet come. That's why he calls her "Woman," because she is the new Eve. And the unknown, unnamed beloved disciple represents the church and is the model for all of us.
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That is another classic example of the mystical sensitivity of this gospel. In the synoptics, the women come to the tomb and are told by the angels that Jesus is risen. That doesn't happen in John. Mary Magdalene comes to the tomb and finds the angels there, who tell her nothing. She meets Jesus in the garden and doesn't recognize him at first.
Then he says to her, "Mary," and she realizes it is he. The mystical connection with Jesus does not require an intermediary, does not need an angel to explain what is going on. It is personal, unmediated contact with Jesus. Plenty of people are mystical and don't know it. They'd be surprised if you told them, because the tradition of mysticism is esoteric, unusual, supposedly reserved for Carmelite nuns.
But every single person has the possibility of entering into this wonderful union with God and Jesus Christ through the power of the Spirit. Evil and good are all around us. We have to learn to let the evil go and gather in the good, to say "thank you, Lord" every time something good happens. That "thank you" enables us to digest that goodness, make it part of ourselves. So the best witness, the best advertisement of mysticism is to be a joyful person. Mysticism is just the appreciation of the presence of God. Holy Week is a drama in three acts.
You can't just come in on Easter Sunday, because without the first two acts, it doesn't make any sense. The first two acts require our decisions. First, Holy Thursday, which is Jesus' last attempt to tell us that living unselfishly is the only way to achieve happiness. Good Friday tells us that this is not going to be easy; it will involve suffering.
But don't feel sorry for those who suffer because they love. Feel sorry for those who suffer because they don't love, because they are proud, stubborn people who don't get their way. That suffering has nothing to do with Jesus' Passion. The Resurrection is God's third act, where we witness what God can do for those who dare to love as Jesus loved and who suffer because they love. Don't forget that every single word of the New Testament was written after the Resurrection, the central event, just as every word of the Old Testament was written after the Exodus of the Jews from Egypt, the central event of the Old Testament.
The two are connected. In Exodus, God loved the slaves into freedom and gave them a purpose in life.
Jesus brings us the second Exodus by taking on our bondage freely. His challenge is, "I'm giving my life for you so that you will dare to give your life for others.
The only purpose of freedom, the only responsible use of freedom, is to love others, that they too may be free. Now, we all have ways of loving others that may or may not lead to their freedom. In fact, I think in the Last Judgment, there will be one big question: Did you let my people go?
What was the impact of your life on the people you knew, especially your family? Everyone's experience is different. But I think when the church is true to herself she is an instrument of liberation. The sacrament of Penance is a powerful sacrament of liberation.
Preaching and education, when they're done well, are powerful instruments of liberation: liberating people from a sense of alienation, from ignorance. Ignorance is a terrible burden. I see my students saying, "I never thought of that!iminonconthey.ga
The Gospel According to DEMETRIUS TOLEFREE
Sure, we often have the other image of the church as a mother forbidding us to do certain things, but I think the dimensions of liberation are still very much in operation. When I hear Confessions, I am more edified than anyone by people's sense of honesty and genuine sense of relief at having the church tell them officially, "You're forgiven. View the discussion thread. Sign up for our weekly newsletter. Skip to main content. You are here Home. Catholic interview Print Share. You've taught scripture for virtually all of your adult life.
What led you to devote your life to it? So how can the Gospel of John guide our lives and help us to deal with real problems? What do you mean when you call it "symbolic"? Can you give an example? It was painful for Saint Demetrius to watch the continuing crucifixion of Christ by the authorities. That His followers, because of fear, were running away from Him.
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On account of their weak faith, they avoided carrying their own crosses. That pain which did not end when Christ died on Golgotha. How much do we love Him?
November 8, John of Kronstadt Church in Hamburg.