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Question
Dear Mr. Bode,
One time I asked my mother if she believed in an afterlife?
Her reply was, "There has got to be something more than this."
I was stunned. There has got to be something more than this wondrous existence and universe that reaches beyond our imagination in complexity? Why?

Answer
The brief answer: Our hearts were made for you, Oh God, and they are restless until they rest in You!  So wrote Augustine toward the end of the fourth century AD.

The infinite God of intellect and will power created mankind with a spiritual intellect and will that seek the spiritual good of the creator.  Created goods fall short of the goal.  God did not make us to be frustrated but to be able with divine grace to attain a perfect and everlasting happiness.

We need to pray that we cooperate with that grace.

Your mother's instinct was on target.

Best wishes, Charles

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Edward Bode

Expertise

Catholic dogma, especially as related to Scripture. I have a doctorate in biblical theology [University of St. Thomas, Rome]. I do not answer questions concerning personal moral situations -- ones dealing with right and wrong [sin].

Experience

I have taught Catholic thought in grade and high schools, and in college and universities.

Organizations
Catholic Biblical Association

Publications
Catholic Biblical Quarterly, The Bible Today.

Education/Credentials
Graduate degrees in theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University, in scripture from the Pontifical Biblical Institute, and a doctorate in theology from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas; all in Rome

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