Veritas Grau, FSP
(First of a series on Alberionian metaphors for Jesus Master)
Master is the Light of the world. His followers should be
reflectors of this light.
of light seems fundamental to Blessed James Alberione's concept of Jesus Master.
It is linked with Jesus as Word: "May the light of the Gospel shine to
the farthest bounds of the earth" (first part, Chaplet to the Queen of
Apostles - prayer of Blessed James Alberione), but is also a characteristic
of the Eucharistic presence. This conjunction of light and Eucharist harks
back to the night between the centuries, when the seed of the Pauline charism
burst out of darkness: :a great light shone from the Host." One of the
seminal phrases found in the Pauline chapels is a reminder that Jesus has
assured the Founder: "From here (from the Tabernacle) I want to cast
with the Gospel phrase in which Jesus says, "I have come to cast light
upon the earth and how anguished I am till it be kindled!" (Lk. 12:49).
The light of Jesus, then, is not simply a cool neon illumination; it is a
searing flame burning unquenchably like the holy light of the burning bush
that transformed Moses into a prophet and apostle. "May the fire brought
by you upon the earth inflame, enlighten, and warm everyone. (2nd part of
the chaplet to the Sacred Heart - prayer of Fr. James Alberione).
is light not only in what he does, but in what he is. Alberione steeped his
view of Christ in the sublime metaphor that opens John's Gospel. The prologue
of John is one of the favorite Alberionian Gospel passages, put in the manual
of prayers to be pondered on and assimilated. In John's vision, Jesus' life
is the light of life,"and the life was the light of all men. The light
shines in the darkness. And the darkness did not overcome it. It was the true
light that enlightens every man which had come into the world..." (John
1:4, 5, 9). It is easy to see here that Jesus Master is the light of truth,
the light of truth, the light that guides humanity's path through the darkness,
the light of life.
The first part
of the chaplet to the Divine Master (another Alberionian prayer), speaks of
him as layered light: "the light of reason and the light of faith, and...
the light of glory." The same theme, more expanded upon in its verbal
and artistic expression, is found in Fr. Alberione's Via Humanitatis.
If Jesus Master,
Way, Truth and Life is LIGHT ("I am the light of the world," Jn
8:12), then we his followers also should be light for the world, reflecting
the glory of the Lord with the unveiled faces of a pure, transparent, love-rooted
life, as Paul tells us. As Christians, we have a vocation not simply to witness
to the true light, not simply to give that light, but to BE light. An extended
metaphor that Alberione uses, drawn from the media world, is that Christ's
apostles should be reflectors of divine light, magnifying glasses that can
focus a ray of light intensely upon common wood or paper, to set it a flames
with divine zeal.