From my first year in the Saint Ignatius Institute at the University of San Francisco, I knew the importance of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (abbreviated as CCC) because in most of my theology driven Institute classes it was quoted by my professors. It was Father Joseph Fessio, S.J., founder of the Saint Ignatius Institute and Ignatius Press, who first professed the importance of studying the newly promulgated catechism.
Over the years since 1994, I have read nearly the entire Catechism, have quoted from it for papers and blog posts, and have used it extensively when teaching others about Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church. The Catechism of the Catholic Church plays a major role in the New Evangelization set before the Church today. There should be a copy of one in every Catholic household. To buy it, click here.
With that being said, let’s turn towards the first official brief lesson from the Catechism. Since today is Good Friday, the day we remember Jesus’ Sacrifice on the Cross and Burial in the Tomb, let us begin here.
CCC 619: “Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures” (1 Cor 15:3).
CCC 620: Our salvation flows from God’s initiative of love for us, because “he loved us and sent his Son to be the expiation of our sins” (1 Jn 4:10). “God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself” (2 Cor 5:19).
CCC 621: Jesus freely offered himself for our salvation. Beforehand, during the Last Supper, he both symbolized this offering and made it really present: “This is my body which is given for you” (Lk 22:19).
CCC 622: The redemption won by Christ consists in this, that he came “to give his life as a ransom for many’ (Mt 20:28), that is, he “loved [his own] to the end” (Jn 13:1), so that they might be “ransomed from the futile ways inherited from [their] fathers” (1 Pet 1:18).
CCC 623: By his loving obedience to the Father, “unto death, even death on cross” (Phil 2:8), Jesus fulfills the atoning mission (cf. Isa 53:10) of the suffering Servant, who will “make many righteous; and he shall bear their iniquities” (Isa 53:11; cf. Rom 5:19).
CCC 629: To the benefit of every man, Jesus Christ tasted death (cf. Heb 2:9). It is truly the Son of God made man who died and was buried.
CCC 630: During Christ’s period in the tomb, his divine person continued to assume both his soul and his body, although they were separated from each other by death. For this reason the dead Christ’s body “saw no corruption” (Acts 13:37).
For a more extensive explanation of the above paragraphs, please read CCC 613-620 and CCC 624-628.
Please be advised: the numbers next to the CCC above are the paragraph numbers, not the page numbers.