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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Saintliness is the Measure of Christian Life . . . Vatican Information Service


SAINTLINESS IS THE MEASURE OF CHRISTIAN LIFE

VATICAN CITY, 13 APR 2011 (VIS) - During this Wednesday's general audiences,
Benedict XVI concluded the cycle of catechesis he has dedicated over the
course of two years to the many saints who "with their faith, with their
charity and with their lives, have been beacons for many generations, and
are thus also for us".

 "Often we are led to believe that sainthood is reserved to a few chosen
ones", the Pope said. Nonetheless, "saintliness, the fullness of Christian
life, does not consist in the achievement of extraordinary feats, but in
uniting oneself with Christ... in making His disposition ... His behaviour
... our own. ... The II Vatican Council, in the Constitution of the Church,
speaks clearly of the universal call to sainthood, affirming that no-one is
excluded".

 However, a holy life, the Pope continued, "is not principally the result
of our efforts, as it is God ... who renders us holy, and it is the action
of his Spirit which animates us from within, the same life of Christ
resurrected which is communicated to us and which transforms us ...
Saintliness is therefore ultimately rooted in baptismal grace, in being
introduced to the paschal mystery of Christ, by which His Spirit, His
resurrected life, is communicated to us. ... But God always respects our
freedom and asks us to accept this gift and to live with the demands it
brings, asks that we may allow ourselves to be transformed by the action of
the Holy Spirit, conforming our will to the will of God".

 "How can it be that our way of thinking and our actions become the thought
and action of Christ?" asked the Pope. "Once again, the II Vatican Council
offers us clear guidance; it tells us that Christian holiness is none other
than charity, fully experienced". However, in order that charity might,
"like a good seed, grow in the soul and there bear fruit, the faithful must
listen gladly to the Word of God and, by its grace, carry out His will
through their works, participate frequently in the sacraments, above all the
Eucharist and the Holy Liturgy; they must constantly apply themselves in
prayer, in the abnegation of their selves, in the active service of their
brothers and in the exercise of every virtue. ... For this reason the true
disciple of Christ is characterised by his charity both toward God and
toward his neighbour".

 "The Church, during the Liturgical Year, invites us to commemorate an
array of saints who have fully lived in charity, and have loved and followed
Christ in their everyday lives. They show us that it is possible to follow
this path. ... We are all called to saintliness: it is the very measure of
Christian life".

 Benedict XVI concluded by inviting us all to open ourselves "to the action
of the Holy Spirit, which transforms our life, so that we too may become
tesserae in the great mosaic of sainthood that God creates throughout
history".

"The Glory of God is a human being fully alive!” 
St. Irenaeus, the great second-century theologian

1 comment:

newevangelizationm said...

"We are all called to be Great Saints. -Don't miss the opportunity!" -Mother Angelica