Villa La Paz Newsletter September 2016

Theodicy: defense of God’s goodness and omnipotence in view of the existence of evil.
Miriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary
Tenth Edition

The existence of evil and suffering in the world is a proof, not that God is either good but powerless, or all powerful but not good. On the contrary, it is a proof that God is both loving and omnipotent. Only absolute love could grant unhindered freedom, and only omnipotence can endure the operation of that freedom.
D.R. Davies

If I did not believe, if I did not make what is called an act of faith (and each act of faith increases our faith, and our capacity for faith), if I did not have faith that the works of mercy do lighten the sum total of suffering in the world, so that those who are suffering…somehow mysteriously find their pain lifted and some balm of consolation poured on their wounds, if I did not believe these things the problem of evil would indeed be overwhelming.
Dorothy Day

And I saw the river over which every soul must pass to reach the kingdom of heaven and the name of the river was suffering and I saw a boat which carries souls across the river and the name of the boat was love.
St. John of the Cross

In the final analysis, the question of why bad things happen to good people transmutes itself into some very different questions, no longer asking why something happened, but asking how we will respond, what we intend to do now that it happened.
Pierre Teilhard De Chardin, S.J.

Every day each one of us struggles with the seeming paradox of a loving, infinite Father and the existence of evil and suffering. Every day our faith is tested in the crucible of a crushed and bleeding world. The ever present question “why” keeps surfacing in our minds, trying to reconcile our belief in a benevolent Father Who gazes upon a world torn by war, poverty, brutality, hatred.

I think there are two aspects that do not completely explain the problem of evil, since it can never by fully explained, but at least give us an insight into why it is permitted. One is that we have been gifted with free will. Our infinite and humble God wants us to love Him of our own volition. He does not force our love but waits for it and indeed entreats it. Some have chosen to reject His love and in so doing perpetrate evil and suffering. He will not detain them because of His gift of free will but always brings good out of the evil perpetrated and this good consists in our response to evil and suffering. Through compassion we respond to those injured in wars, to those who suffer unjust poverty and oppression by succoring them. In our compassion for them we forget ourselves, our own needs and give to another and in so doing save ourselves, abandoning our false selves, the ego and its perceptions, and entering into our true selves where the Spirit of God dwells. We respond equally when confronted with persons suffering physical or mental illnesses and victims of natural disasters. Out of these evils God generates our good.

A second aspect is that in our own suffering and distress we lift our hearts to God. Suffering and pain humble us, they show us that we are not in control of our existence, that Another defines and directs our lives. In appealing to Him we acknowledge our dependence on Him and the fact that our needs require His providence. Suffering and pain, then, can be salvific since we approach God, our Father, as His children and reestablish a relationship that was probably lost in times of prosperity and good health. We do not feel the need for God when there is light and times are good and as a result we distance ourselves from Him. We do feel His need when there is darkness and times are bad.

The children on these pages suffer from unjust poverty and a variety of illnesses but they have changed many lives. We receive volunteers from many parts of the world, young and old and even entire families and all say that the home and the children are life-changing experiences. God is acting through the children, their illnesses and afflictions, to change the hearts of others, for despite their physical limitations the children are happy and giving. They are beacons of God’s love.

The question, “Why do children suffer?” has no answer unless it is simply, “To break our hearts.” Once our hearts get broken, they never fully heal. They always ache. But perhaps a broken heart is a more loving instrument. Perhaps only after our hearts have cracked wide open, have finally and totally unclenched, can we truly know love without boundaries.
Fred Epstein

Thank you for supporting our children. Please pray for us. We love you and wish you God’s peace.

Christopher – Short Limbed Dwarfism and Congenital Heart Disease

Christopher - Short Limbed Dwarfism and Congenital Heart Disease

Christopher
Short Limbed Dwarfism and
Congenital Heart Disease

Cesar – Cerebral Palsy and Dislocated Hips

Cesar - Cerebral Palsy and Dislocated Hips

Cesar
Cerebral Palsy and Dislocated Hips

Hacked By Shade

Hacked By Shade

Hacked By Shade

 

GreetZ : Prosox & Sxtz

Hacked By Shade <3

Luis Victor – Leukemia

Luis Victor - Leukemia

Luis Victor
Leukemia

Luz – Cerebral Palsy and Dislocated Hips

Luz - Cerebral Palsy and Dislocated Hips

Luz
Cerebral Palsy and Dislocated Hips

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