As I was writing about Psalm 118:22 about the stone rejected by the builders but now has become the cornerstone, I asked myself what possible catechetical value it can have. It was obvious from the way it was used by Paul (Eph. 2:20) and Peter (1 Peter 2:7) that its primary catechetical value is to show how Jesus is related to the Church and the Church to Him. But how does one apply the image of the cornerstone for, let’s say, a third-grader who has just received first communion? Or how would one talk about it to a mother of three?
Jesus speaks about a rock foundation on which one can build a house. He compares it to the person who hears His words and lives them. Paul speaks of proclaiming the gospel as if it were an edifice that should be constructed on the foundation that is Christ (not on the Bible, mind you, but on the Person of Christ, cf. 1 Cor. 3:11). I can think of a life-project that one constructs out of one’s dreams and hard work. Teen-agers, I think, would appreciate that kind of imagery. A life-project that one builds on the cornerstone that is Christ. Without Him, that life-project will totter and fall.
Another application, I think, would be the household as a “home” that has the father as the structure that holds it together, the mother as the one who lights up the family with Christ as the foundation of family-life. I think parents would like the idea. If only there exists ritual blessings for the home that the father as head of the family can administer…
Friendships too are something that friends build together. Augustinian spirituality makes “vocation” the leitmotif of friendships. One’s call to holiness includes a call to be-with. As Christ called disciples two-by-two and sent them out two-by-two, he calls people together to be “sacraments” of God’s friendship with men. It is no accident that Augustine wanted his community of friends to be the representation of the Church living under the rule of the apostles: “one mind and one heart intent upon God.”
That’s three applications. What else can there be?
Originally posted 2006-03-17 21:59:34. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
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