Contributors Learning to love like him

Christ can make all things new — but we must help

Joshua Ruoff is the lead consultant for the archdiocesan special-needs ministry. He can be reached by email at:

by Joshua Ruoff

This new year started out rough with the death of Pope Benedict XVI at the end of 2022.

I had the privilege of attending World Youth Day in 2011. During our last few days there, millions of people walked together for several miles to the papal site where that night we had eucharistic adoration.

The entire night, it was pouring rain and the winds were so strong that the umbrella covering the pope was blown away several times. The moment that the Blessed Sacrament was exposed, there was complete stillness and calm. It was probably the first time in my life where I felt completely at peace.

I am a big sports fan, and like millions of others I had to watch the terrible incident during the Monday Night Football game on Jan. 2. As terrible as that was — and still is — as I write this just a few days later, it already has brought out so much good.

The whole country and world have come together in prayer. This incident has been a witness to all of us that our lives are not in our control and we must rely on Our Lord to watch over us and guide us.

Our lives are filled with so much chaos and anxiety; the new year is a good time for us to look back on the prior year and reflect on both the good and the bad. Then we decide to make changes that will hopefully bring about more of the good times and the good feelings in the year ahead.

A lot of us will decide we are going to lose weight, spend less time at work and more time with family. Hopefully, we all have planned to make changes to improve our spiritual life and our relationship with Christ.

If you haven’t, you don’t need to wait for 2024 to come around to decide to make those changes. You can make that choice today.

Jesus tells us that he makes all things new (Rv 21:5) and we are told that anyone who is in Christ is a new creation (2 Cor 5:17).

This is a promise to us that if we choose here and now to live for Christ, we are made new. But, much like deciding to lose weight requires serious commitment on our part, so does living for Christ. We must commit to pray, fast and participate in the sacraments we have been given.

So, whatever your New Year’s resolutions are, make sure you are always keeping your relationship with Christ as the first priority, and allow each day to be a new opportunity to grow closer to him.

¡Viva el Papa!

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Joshua Ruoff

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