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Message  Javier le Mer 21 Aoû 2019, 12:45 pm

Besides faith and hope a beginning of the
love of God
is also necessary. We say a
beginning of love,
because the fulness of the
love of God belongs to those that are already
sanctified by grace.
Justification is nothing
but the passing from the state of enmity to
that of the love of God. He who wishes
to be justified must long to be holy and to
be a child of God. This longing is nothing
but the beginning of the love of God.

Love has various degrees, the first of which
is the keeping of the commandments of
God.
"Who keeps My commandments,
he it is that loves Me,"
says our Lord.
The beginning of the love of God is, therefore,
the firm purpose to avoid sin and to
do the will of God.



One that really loves God, or at least is
beginning to love Him truly,
will necessarily
detest sin and wish to sin no more.
This,
too, then, is necessary for justification —
that
we repent of our sins.
The Church has
always taught that it is necessary for justification
that the sinner do something on his part and
that faith alone is not sufficient; but that besides
faith he must have hope, the beginning of love,
and repentance for his sins.
When any one wished to be
admitted to the communion of the Church
it was always the practice that for some
time before Baptism such a person was
instructed in the teaching of the Church,

that he had to practice faith by hearing the
word of God, that he had to practice hope
by prayer, and love by the keeping of the
commandments of God.
That any one that
had the use of reason should be admitted to
Baptism without faith, hope, love, and repentance
for sins committed, was unknown in the Church.
Those that were preparing for Baptism were called
catechumens. It is to the catechumens that
St. Cyril of Jerusalem addresses the following admonition :
" Prepare thy heart for the reception of the
doctrine and the sacred mysteries. Pray
frequently that God may make thee worthy
of the celestial and eternal mysteries. Neither
by day nor by night cease from prayer,
and as soon as sleep has gone from thine
eyes let the spirit be given to prayer. As
soon as thou perceivest an improper thought
to arise in thy soul, have recourse to the
memory of the judgment. Keep thy spirit
to study, and thou shalt escape thoughts that
are unwholesome.
Keep thy soul from the
snares of the devil and secure in hope, and
thou shalt be an heir of heaven."
In this
and like manner did St. Cyril instruct his
catechumens for forty days before he admitted
them to Baptism. He would never have
done this if he had thought that nothing
but faith was required for Baptism. On the
contrary, it was always the persuasion of the
Fathers that a thorough preparation was
necessary,
in order that one might be raised
from a state of enmity to that of friendship
with God ; to make one who had been a sinner
a child of God and an heir of the happiness of
heaven.
The Church never believed that one in
whom so great a change was to take place could
be entirely passive and do nothing on his part.
Man has understanding and free will ; he must exercise
these faculties in the work of justification
— the understanding by subjecting it to the
yoke of faith, the will by turning from evil
and seeking God.


To be continued...

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Message  Javier le Sam 24 Aoû 2019, 4:47 am

This same method is followed today.
When a person comes to the priest, and
makes known his intention of becoming a
Catholic, the priest does not immediately
proceed to baptize such a one, but he first
leads him to believe, and for this reason he
instructs him in the Catholic religion ; hope
is excited by the practice of frequent
prayer ; finally the convert must avoid sin,
and make frequent acts of contrition. Just
before Baptism the person to be baptized
must recite the Apostles' Creed and the Our
Father, and he must renounce the works of
Satan. Even when children are baptized,
these things are not omitted ; the sponsors
perform them in the name of the child. The
Church shows by this that she believes that
man must do his part in the work of justification;

God makes the beginning, and continually
accompanies the acts of the creature
with His grace.


To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Lun 26 Aoû 2019, 4:34 am

These acts of faith, hope, love, and repentance
are only the preparation to receive the
grace of justification; they do not justify.
Justification comes through the sacrament of
Baptism, according to the words of our Lord,
" Unless a man is born again of water and
the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter the kingdom
of God."
1 Baptism is absolutely
necessary for salvation, so that no one can be
saved without it.
Only in case that it is impossible
to receive the Baptism of water,
the
intense desire of it, joined with perfect contrition
— that is, sorrow for sin out of the
love of God, can replace it ;
this is called the
Baptism of desire.
Suffering death for the
sake of Christ, and thus becoming a martyr,
can also take the place of Baptism by water ;

this we call the Baptism of blood. These
are
extraordinary ways of receiving the grace
of justification;
the ordinary manner is by
the Baptism of water.
The Baptism of
desire and the Baptism of blood give sanctifying
grace only when the Baptism of water
is impossible.
(*Nota: En otras palabras,
dado que hoy ya no podemos recurrir a NADIE para
que nos administre los Sacramentos, aquellas familias
católicas que deseen bautizar a sus hijos recién nacidos
deberán hacerlo mediante el Bautismo de Deseo, implorando
fervientemente al Buen Dios que se apiade de ellos y de
su bebé, y pedirle con gran deseo que se digne derramar
Su gracia santificante sobre esa pequeña y desvalida
criatura. Lo mismo se puede afirmar para los adultos nunca
bautizados que deseen convertirse a la fe católica, el bendito
Bautismo de Deseo es absolutamente necesario para ellos.
Nuestro Señor y Su santa Iglesia son en verdad misericordiosos,
sabios y previsores. DEO GRATIAS !
)



In the New Law children receive sanctifying
grace, and thus are justified by Baptism
without any act on their part.
Adults must
believe in God, hope in Him, begin to love
Him, and must repent of their sins ; then
they must be baptized in order to receive
sanctifying grace and become just in the eyes
of God.



In Baptism we receive sanctifying grace,
and so are justified ; this grace is also called
habitual grace because it remains in the
soul and adorns it. However, we are not to
understand this as though sanctifying grace
could never be lost when it has once been
received. Sanctifying grace remains in the
soul until it is forcibly expelled by mortal
sin. He who has lost sanctifying grace
cannot please God, and cannot be saved
whilst in this state ; he is in the same condition
as one that has not yet been baptized.
In fact, he is in a worse condition, since he
has also to answer for the abuse of the mercy
of God which has been shown him in
Baptism. Of such a one our Lord says,
" The last state of that man is made worse
than the first."
2


1 John 3. 5.
2 Matt. 12. 45.



To be continued...

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Message  Javier le Mer 28 Aoû 2019, 6:10 am

Is there then no remedy left for one who
has lost the grace of his Baptism ?
Is there
no means of freeing ourselves of the sins
committed after Baptism and of regaining
the friendship and grace of God ?
If God
had said, I will give you My grace, and forgive
you your sins, but after that you must
remain faithful ; if you commit sin again, you
will be lost ; if He had said this, we could
not complain.
Through Baptism we receive
sanctifying grace, which is a priceless treasure,
and hence to throw it away and to
esteem it of so little value as to give it for
some useless gratification of the senses, is
the deepest ingratitude.
Still God in His
mercy has wished to pardon even this, if we
repent of our sins. He has prepared a
remedy by which those that lose sanctifying
grace obtained in Baptism may regain it and
become once more the children of God and
heirs of heaven.



Jesus Christ, our Lord, has come to seek
and to save those that were lost. In His
infinite mercy and goodness, He has taken
pity on man, on account of his natural
weakness and the inclination to evil which
remains as an effect of original sin, and has
established a special sacrament by which
those that have lost the grace received in
Baptism may regain it and thus be saved
from eternal damnation.
This sacrament
is the sacrament of Penance.
Jesus instituted
this sacrament after His resurrection
from the dead, when He said to the apostles,
" Receive ye the Holy Ghost : whose sins you
shall forgive, they are forgiven them ; and
whose sins you shall retain, they are retained."
1
Again, at another time, He told His apostles,
" Whatsoever you shall bind upon earth,
shall be bound also in heaven ;
and whatsoever you shall loose upon earth,
shall be loosed also in heaven."
2 Christ has
given His apostles and their successors,
the bishops and priests of the Catholic
Church, the power to forgive sins in His
name. This power is exercised in the sacrament
of Penance, where the sins are forgiven through
the absolution of the priest, whenever any one
is heartily sorry for his sins, confesses them sincerely,
and is willing to make satisfaction for them.


1 John 20. 23.
2 Matt. 18. 18.


To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Ven 30 Aoû 2019, 5:14 am

Through the sacrament of Penance they
that have had the misfortune to lose the sanctifying
grace received in Baptism can be
saved.
Penance is often called a second
plank after shipwreck. A man's life is
compared to a sea voyage: by Baptism he
is put on a ship that is to carry him safely
to the port of heaven; when he commits
a mortal sin, he is, so to speak, shipwrecked,
and unless a plank or some other object
be near him - to which he can cling, he
will certainly be drowned; no power of
his own can ever save him. The sacrament
of Penance is such a plank after shipwreck.
Penance is also called the laborious Baptism
of tears. Just as in Baptism we are cleansed
from our sins by water and the Holy Ghost,
so in penance the place of water is taken by
tears of contrition. This, however, does not mean
that we must actually weep ; we can be sorry for our sins
even without shedding tears. Tears are
a sign of sorrow, and therefore we call penance
a Baptism of tears merely to indicate
that a deep sorrow for sin is absolutely
necessary in this sacrament. In the early
days of the Church penance was much more
difficult than it is now. In those days they
that had sinned were often compelled to
do public penance for their sins ; they had to
remain for months, and even years, outside
the church doors during some parts of
the Mass, ask the prayers of those that
entered the church, and so profess themselves
to all the people as sinners. Today the
priest still gives a penance to be performed,
for this is a part of the sacrament; but the
penances are much lighter and rarely public.


To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Lun 02 Sep 2019, 5:09 am

The Church has always believed that
sins committed after Baptism are forgiven
through the sacrament of Penance, and has
at all times administered this sacrament.
For the worthy reception of this sacrament
the sinner must do something on his part,

in order that he may again obtain the
grace of God.
To regain justification, lost
by mortal sin, he must believe, hope, begin
to love God, and repent of his sins, and then
receive the sacrament of Penance.



As in the justification of one who is not
baptized, so also in the justification of one
who has lost sanctifying grace by mortal
sin, God makes the beginning.
God, by
His grace, calls the lost sheep; He invites
him to return.
The occasion may be a
sermon, an instruction, the voice of the
priest or of a friend, a missionary, or it may
be the voice of conscience.
The grace of
God is internal,
but He often joins it to
some sign or event.
The sinner must obey
this call of the grace of God ; if he neglects
it, he cannot be justified without it. He
must allow himself to be led by the grace
of God ; under its influence he must believe
in Jesus and hope for His forgiveness.
Faith is the root from which all justification
springs ; without faith we can do nothing
to please God. If we believe in Jesus
and His infinite mercy, we will also hope
in His forgiveness.
Then if we are sorry
for our sins and resolve to avoid sin in the
future,
we are beginning to love God.


To be continued...

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Message  Javier le Mer 04 Sep 2019, 6:16 am

Now that the sinner has, with the help
of divine grace, prepared his soul by these
acts for the reception of sanctifying grace,
he must receive the sacrament of Penance.
Christ ordained this by the words which
He spoke to His apostles, "Whose sins,"
etc.1 By these words Jesus instituted
the sacrament of Penance, and ordained
that the priest examine into the state of
the soul of the penitent and forgive him
his sins in the name of Jesus Christ if he
finds him properly disposed. It is true
sins can be forgiven also without the actual
reception of the sacrament of Penance
by
an act of perfect contrition,
that is, by sorrow
for sin out of the motive of the love of
God;
but there must always be included
in this contrition the resolution of confessing
one's sins as soon as possible. It is
impossible to be sorry for one's sins out
of the motive of the love of God, without
wishing to comply also with the commandments
He has given. God has ordained
that the ordinary way to receive forgiveness
of the sins committed after Baptism
is the sacrament of Penance ; hence perfect
contrition forgives sins only when we are
willing to comply with the ordinary arrangements
God has made for the remission of sin.


We have indeed cause to be grateful to
God for the institution of the sacrament
of Penance; for how few there are who
retain pure and unsoiled the garment of
baptismal innocence ! How few there
would be to obtain the kingdom of heaven
if God had not made provision for the
forgiveness of the sins committed after
Baptism!
This sacrament, therefore, is a
testimonial of the mercy and goodness of
God toward us. By means of it the obtaining
of eternal happiness has been made
comparatively easy. After our ingratitude,
God could have prescribed most difficult
conditions for the regaining of sanctifying grace,
but He has preferred to make the return to Him
possible, and even easy, for every one.

All that He requires is that we detest our sins,
resolve to serve Him faithfully in the future,
confess our sins to His representative, *
and accept the penance imposed on us by him.



It is true it may seem difficult to some to confess
their sins to another; but sin is an act of
rebellion and pride,
and is therefore most
appropriately forgiven by an act of humility.

With the help of the grace of God, the
false shame which would keep us from telling
our sins can be overcome ; we must take
this medicine, which may seem a little bitter
at times, if we wish to regain the health of
the soul. Besides, God has ordained that
these sins shall never be revealed by the
priest. The priest must suffer death rather
than make known the least sin heard in
confession.


1 John 20. 22.


* Nota de Fray Javier del Espíritu Santo: No habiendo ya ningún representante de Dios válido y lícito a quien confesar nuestros pecados, al Pequeño Rebaño de fieles que formamos lo poco que todavía subsiste de la Iglesia Católica nos corresponde realizar numerosos actos de contricción perfecta cada vez que tengamos la desgracia -Dios no lo quiera- de cometer algún pecado mortal o venial. El arrepentimiento y el dolor por haber ofendido a Ntro. Dios y Señor deben ser intensos y sinceros, hermanos míos, debemos dolernos en lo más hondo de nuestra alma por haber despreciado y abusado de la gracia de Dios por un vil y miserable capricho, placer, orgullo o cualquier otro desorden. Debemos pedirle a Dios mediante la misericordiosa intercesión de María Santísima que nos perdone por los méritos infinitos de Su dolorosa Pasión y Muerte, y que lave y borre nuestros pecados con Su Preciosa Sangre. Entremos cada uno en nuestra habitación y a solas, en el silencio, lloremos por tanta ingratitud nuestra hacia Aquél que se entregó a Sí mismo para que nosotros, miserables y débiles criaturas, tuviéramos vida eterna en abundancia. Después, una vez hecha la confesión ante Nuestro Salvador y Redentor, ofrezcámosle una digna penitencia en reparación por nuestras ofensas, y en unión con Su Pasión y Muerte en la Cruz por nosotros. El ayuno es una buena penitencia, y la limosna lo es incluso más. ¡La limosna lava los pecados y los borra! Seamos generosos y demos limosna, mucha limosna a los pobres, porque quien da a los pobres está prestando a Dios, el cual es el mejor pagador y el más justo y misericordioso de todos.

To be continued...

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Message  Javier le Ven 06 Sep 2019, 5:01 am

After Baptism there is no remedy for
sin except the sacrament of Penance.
We
may fast, give alms, pray, perform the greatest
works of piety, but unless we are willing
to confess our sins, and so comply with
the will of God, it is all in vain.
God has
willed this, and His will must be done.
If,
on the contrary, after proper preparation,
we confess our sins candidly to the priest,
and he, by the power given him by Jesus
Christ, says, " I absolve thee from thy sins,
in the name of the Father and of the Son
and of the Holy Ghost,"
then our sins are
forgiven,
and sanctifying grace again enters
our souls; we are once more children of
God ; once more heaven is our right.
Then
we should rejoice and thank God with
the Psalmist : " Bless the Lord, O my soul ;
and let all that is within me praise His
holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul;
and never forget all He hath done for
thee: who forgiveth all thy iniquities; who
healeth all thy diseases; who redeemeth
thy life from destruction; who crowneth
thee with mercy and compassion."
1


1 Psalm 102. 1-4.


Coming next... ON THE INFUSED VIRTUES IN GENERAL, AND
ON FAITH IN PARTICULAR


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Message  Javier le Dim 08 Sep 2019, 5:28 am

V - ON THE INFUSED VIRTUES IN GENERAL, AND
ON FAITH IN PARTICULAR - THE INFUSED VIRTUES



What do you call those graces or gifts of God by which
we believe in Him, hope in Him, and love Him ?

Those graces or gifts of God by which we believe in
Him, hope in Him, and love Him, are called the divine
virtues of faith, hope, and charity.




By sanctifying grace man is justified, that
is, all his sins are remitted, and he is interiorly
sanctified and made pleasing to God ;
he becomes a child of God, and has a right
to the eternal happiness of heaven. As a
child and servant of God, he must know
God, his Father and Lord, he must hope for
the reward which God has promised him for
his fidelity, and he must love God above all
things. All these things follow from sanctifying
grace, which makes us children of
God. Hence the catechism asks in this
place the question, " What do you call
those graces or gifts of God by which we
believe in Him, hope in Him, and love
Him?"



"Those graces or gifts of God by which we
believe in Him, hope in Him, and love Him,
are called the divine virtues of
faith, hope,
and charity."



The catechism calls them graces or gifts
to indicate that,
just like grace, they are
given without any merit on our part,
purely
through the mercy and goodness of God.

Without sanctifying grace we do not have
the virtues of faith, hope, and charity.
Now we know that sanctifying grace is
a free gift of God ; the virtues, therefore,
which are infused, that is, poured into the
soul, with it, and on account of it, are also
gratuitous. God gives them to us without
any merit of our own.
Through sanctifying
grace God gives us a supernatural life;
life
shows itself in actions.
We have our natural
life through the soul, which is the source of
life ; this life shows itself through the acts of
our faculties, — we walk, we think, we will —,
and by these actions it is known that we
have life ; they are its manifestations.
Grace
raises our soul to a supernatural life ; this
life, too, must manifest itself in some acts;
it, too, must bring with it its supernatural
inclinations.
These supernatural inclinations
are the divine virtues of faith, hope, and
charity; by means of them we can believe,
hope, and love God, in a supernatural manner,
just as we can know and love Him
naturally by means of our natural faculties
of understanding and will.
Grace raises the
soul itself to the supernatural order,
and the
divine virtues elevate the faculties of intellect and will.



To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Mar 10 Sep 2019, 5:05 am

These divine virtues differ from the
natural virtues.
By repeating a certain
good act frequently we gain ease and facility
in performing that act;
so, if a boy is
always attentive and ready to obey, he acquires
through this a great facility to obey ;
his first impulse is to obey, it becomes easy
to him ; we say that he has acquired the virtue
of obedience. From such acquired virtues the
divine virtues of faith, hope, and
charity differ very much ; they are not obtained
through our own efforts by a repetition
of acts,
but they are poured into the soul by
God with sanctifying grace ;
they are not
natural, but supernatural.
The difference
might be illustrated by an example. Let us
suppose that we have a young tree ; by great
care we can make that tree bear fruit, better
in quality and greater in abundance, but we
cannot make it bear a different kind of fruit ;
so, also, by our own efforts we may perform
acts of virtue more perfectly, but we cannot
perform any act which is supernatural. If,
however, a branch of a different kind is
engrafted upon the tree of which we spoke,
then it will bring forth also a different kind
of fruit ;
so it is with the infused virtues,
— by them a supernatural element is, so to
say, engrafted upon our natural faculties, and
on this account we are enabled to believe,
hope, and love in a higher, a supernatural,
manner.



To be continued...

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Message  Javier le Jeu 12 Sep 2019, 6:41 am

That, by the sacrament of Baptism, the
divine virtues of faith, hope, and charity
are infused into the soul,
we learn from the
teaching of the Council of Trent, " Through
the Holy Ghost the charity of God is diffused
in the hearts of those who are justified
and inheres in them, whence in justification
man receives from Jesus Christ together
with the remission of sin, faith, hope, and
charity."
1 That these are not merely the
acts of faith, hope, and charity, we infer
from the fact that the Council teaches that
faith, hope, and charity inhere in the soul,
they remain as something permanent. This
can only be understood in the sense that
they are permanent virtues ; acts are passing,
and cannot be said to inhere in the soul.
The Church therefore teaches that in Baptism
there is infused into the soul something
that remains, by virtue of which we believe
in God, hope in Him, and love Him.
Nature
gives to children an instinct, as it were,
by which they know their parents, trust
them, and love them. There is something
beautiful in the trust that a child puts in
his parents. How he listens to their words
and receives without the least doubt all that
they tell him ! His parents may be without
any great education or learning, still the
child will accept without questioning whatever
he hears from his father. He believes his
father to be able to protect him against all enemies;
he puts the highest trust in him. As
for the love a child bears toward his parents,
it goes above all other human love; the
parents may be in lowly circumstances, yet a
child will prefer his parents to all other men
and women ; he would rather be with his
parents than with the wealthiest and most
influential persons of the world. By grace
we become the children of God.
"And because
you are sons, God hath sent the spirit
of His Son into your hearts, crying : Abba,
Father."
2 By grace, then, God also gives us
the instinct of children ; by grace we know
Him as our Father ; by grace we trust and
hope in Him ; by grace we love Him, and
cry, " Abba, Father." It is most reasonable,
therefore, to believe that, since by grace God
makes us His children, He also infuses into
our hearts with grace the divine virtues of
faith, hope, and charity. By these virtues
we show ourselves His children, and as such
we must know Him in a supernatural way,
a knowledge which comes by faith ; we must
trust in Him, and this is by hope ; we must
love Him, as a child loves his father, which
we do by the virtue of charity. Of these three
virtues St. Paul speaks when he says,
" Now
there remain faith, hope, and charity: these
three ; but the greater of these is charity."
3


To be continued...


1 Con. Trid. Sess. VI, can. 7.
2 Gal. 4- 6.
3 1 Cor. 13. 13.


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Javier
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Message  Javier le Sam 14 Sep 2019, 9:50 am

These virtues are infused into the soul with
sanctifying grace ; by it we become children
of God and receive on this account the
virtues which a child of God must have.
It is true we said in a former chapter that
a grown person must believe in God, must
hope in Him and begin to love Him even
before justification; but these acts do not
flow from a virtue which resides permanently
in the soul. They are done under
the influence of actual grace; they are not
permanent virtues flowing from sanctifying
grace.


The divine virtues of faith, hope,
and charity remain in the soul.
They are
not passing, transient acts, but rather the root
from which such acts spring.
The divine
virtues of faith, hope, and charity are infused
into the soul at Baptism. They are increased
by the worthy reception of the sacraments and
by meritorious good works.
The Church
teaches us that the worthy reception of the
sacraments is always productive of grace.
Now if the sacraments always give grace,
then the sacraments of the living, since
they are received by those that already
live by the life of grace, as also the sacraments
of the dead, when received by one who
is in the state of grace, must give an increase
of sanctifying grace. Sanctifying grace is
increased in the soul by the worthy reception
of the sacraments and by good works ; for the
Church teaches that by good works we can
merit an increase of sanctifying grace,
and
that grace is given to every one according to
his disposition and cooperation.
By sanctifying
grace we are made
" No more strangers
and foreigners: but fellow-citizens with the
saints, and the domestics of God ; "
1 by the
increase of grace through the worthy reception
of the sacraments and by good works we go
from virtue to virtue, and are " renewed from
day to day."
" He that is just, let him be justified
still: and he that is holy, let him be sanctified still."
2


If by the sacraments and good works sanctifying grace is increased,
then it follows that the divine virtues, too, are
increased, since they are infused with sanctifying
grace and flow from it,
just as the natural
faculties are derived from the soul. If he that
is just is by grace justified still, then — since
the Church teaches that justification consists
in the remission of sin and the renovation
of the soul through the infusion of grace and
the divine virtues — it follows that by an increase
of justification both sanctifying grace
and the divine virtues are increased. Hence
the apostles prayed, " Increase our faith," 3 and
the Apostle wished the Romans, " Now the
God of hope fill you with all joy and peace
in believing ; that you may abound in hope
and in the power of the Holy Ghost,"
4 and
prayed for the faithful, " That their charity
abound more and more."
The Church, too,
on the thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost
prays in the Mass, " Omnipotent, eternal God,
give us an increase of faith, hope, and charity."



To be continued...


1 Eph. 2. 19.
2 Apoc. 22. 11.
3 Luke 17. 5.
4 Rom. 15. 13.

Javier
Javier

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Message  Javier le Lun 16 Sep 2019, 7:22 am

Do the divine virtues of faith, hope, and
charity always remain in the soul, once they
have been produced by the operation of the
Holy Ghost, through sanctifying grace, or
are they lost again when man loses grace
through sin ?
This question cannot be
answered by a simple 'yes' or 'no.' It is
certain that the divine virtue of charity or the
love of God is lost when, through mortal sin,
sanctifying grace is lost. Through the love
of God we become the friends of God, but
we cannot be His friends if we are in the
state of sin, and therefore are His enemies.

One that loves God will be loved by Him,
and hence cannot but be a friend of God.
" He that loveth Me shall be loved of My
Father, and I will love him and will manifest
Myself to him."
1 Whom God loves, him He
also gives sanctifying grace.
God's love is
not like our love; we love people because
they are good,
but God's love makes them
good, holy, and just. God's love gives them
sanctifying grace.
Charity, if not the same
as sanctifying grace, is so closely connected
with it that it is impossible to separate the
two ; no one can have charity without having
also sanctifying grace, and no one can
have sanctifying grace without having also
the virtue of charity or the love of God.



Since faith, hope, and charity are infused
together with sanctifying grace,
and since
charity is lost with the loss of grace,
we
would expect that the same be true also of
faith and hope.
However, by a special dispensation
of God's mercy,
He has wished that these virtues
remain in the soul,
even after grace and charity
have been lost by mortal sin,
so that the return of the
sinner to God might be easier.



Although faith and hope, like charity, are derived from sanctifying
grace, yet just as heat, which is caused by fire,
can remain even after the fire is put out,
so
also the virtues of faith and hope remain after
the source, sanctifying grace, is expelled from
the soul.
By faith we are Christians, and it
is clear that one does not cease to be a
Christian when he commits a mortal sin ;
and even a sinner can and must hope that
through the mercy of God his sin will be
forgiven and that he will finally be saved.



This is the teaching of the Church in the
Council of Trent. " If any man say that by
the loss of sanctifying grace faith is always
lost with it, or that faith which remains,
although no living faith, is not true faith, or
that he who has faith without charity is not
a Christian, let him be anathema."
2 The
Church teaches us, therefore, that faith is not
lost by every mortal sin,
but that faith without
grace and charity is dead
— that is, that
without grace, although we have faith, we
cannot do anything to merit the reward of
heaven ; we cannot even merit grace.



To be continued...


1 John 14. 21.
2 Con. Trid. Sess. VI, can. 28.

Javier
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Message  Javier le Mer 18 Sep 2019, 6:08 am

Faith becomes living faith by charity ;
and of one who has living faith St. Paul says,
" The just man liveth by faith." 1 Writing to
the Corinthians, St. Paul says, " If I should have all
faith, so that I could remove mountains, and
have not charity, I am nothing."
2
He supposes, therefore, that we can have faith so
strong as to be able to work miracles without
charity and grace,
but such faith would avail
us nothing for heaven ; it is dead.
Although
by this faith we can do nothing to merit
heaven, it is not useless. God, in His mercy,
wished to leave us faith and hope, so that
we would be better disposed to do penance
and return to Him by real sorrow for our
sins.
How good and merciful God is
to us!
He gives us, without any merit
on our part, His grace of justification,
and
even after we have abused this gift,
He
still leaves us the virtues of faith and hope,
that we may return to Him.
" The Lord is
gracious and merciful : patient and plenteous
in mercy. The Lord is sweet to all; and
His tender mercies are over all His works."
3


To be continued...

1 Rom. 1. 17.
2 I Cor. 13. 2.
3 Psalm 144. 7, 8, 9.

Javier
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Message  Javier le Ven 20 Sep 2019, 5:12 am

ON FAITH

What is faith ?

Faith is a divine virtue by which we firmly believe the
truths which God has revealed.




Faith, hope, and charity are infused into
the soul with sanctifying grace ; they are
the constant companions of grace:
grace
cannot be in the soul without them.
Faith,
hope, and charity constitute the interior
sanctity of justification. Our catechism for
this reason treats here specially of these
three virtues, and first of faith.


Faith is a virtue, that is, it is not merely
a transient act, nor even a series of acts,
but
it is something permanent ; it is a habit that
remains in the soul.
It is called divine
because it comes from God, who infuses it
into the soul, together with sanctifying grace,
without any merit on our part ; it has to do
with God, who is the object of faith, for by
faith we believe in Him; His truthfulness
is the motive of our belief.
When we
learn in school that there is such a country
as China, which we never saw, we believe
this to be true because we trust others who
tell us so. This is human faith. When,
however, God reveals some truth we accept
this truth, because God is truthful ; then
we have divine faith. By faith we believe
firmly, that is without doubt or hesitation.
We accept the truths He has revealed, and
all of them, because He is truth itself;
and if we believe Him on account of His
veracity, there is no reason for doubting
any of the truths He has made known.
Our catechism adds the words which God
has revealed,
and this means that we believe
these truths because God has revealed them.
God's truthfulness is the motive of our
belief.
Let us examine these things a little
more in detail.


To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Dim 29 Sep 2019, 6:36 am

To believe is to hold something: for true,
not because we understand it, but because
we trust him who tells us. In this way we
believe many things. We accept on faith or
believe many things that our parents tell us,
and things that we learn in school. We do
not know whether they are true or false, but
because we trust those who tell us of them, we
hold them as true : we believe them.
Faith
is therefore an assent of the mind, on account
of the truthfulness of one who instructs us.



At times we may doubt the word of another
because we think he does not know
the truth or the falsehood concerning that of
which he speaks. He may not wish to deceive
us, but he may be mistaken himself, or,
if he knows the truth, he may have some
reason for not telling us. In that case he
would deceive us.
Neither of these reasons
holds with God.
He knows all things, and
He is all-holy, and therefore cannot deceive
us nor be deceived. By divine faith we
believe firmly, without any hesitation, all that
God makes known to us, because He can
not be deceived nor can He deceive us. By
faith we come to the knowledge of God ;
we come to know Him more perfectly than
we could know Him by the light of our
own reason; we come to a knowledge of
truths which we could not know by our
own reason, such as His having designed us
to become His sons and to see Him forever
face to face in heaven, etc. These things
we could not know if we were left to ourselves;
by faith we believe them because
we know that God does not deceive us.

Faith is, therefore, something of the intellect;
what reason and intellect are for us
in the natural order,
faith is for us in the
supernatural order.
"By faith we understand
that the world was framed by the word of
God."
1 Faith is supernatural knowledge.
Faith is necessary to salvation, for "He that
believeth and is baptized shall be saved : but
he that believeth not shall be condemned."
2


Faith is, therefore, a salutary act ; but we can
do nothing for our salvation by our natural
powers. Hence faith is supernatural. "For
by grace you are saved through faith, and
that not of yourselves; for it is the gift of
God."
3 Without grace our faith would be
mere natural faith;
to believe, so as to please
God, we need the assistance of His all-powerful
grace.



To be continued...


1 Heb. 11. 3.
2 Mark 16. 16.
3 Eph. 2. 8.

Javier
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Message  Javier le Dim 06 Oct 2019, 2:51 pm

The motive of belief, in order that our
faith be supernatural, must be the veracity
of God.
We believe what God has revealed
because on account of His infinite sanctity
He cannot deceive us. "God is not as a
man, that He should lie, nor as the son
of man, that He should be changed."
1 If
we believe that God became man and
dwelt amongst us, it is because God who
is all truth has revealed this to us. Not
to believe something that God has made
known is to call His truthfulness into
question ; it is to doubt the word of God.
From this we see how foolish those men
are who accept so easily everything that
men tell them, and yet say that they can
not believe the things God has revealed.
They will believe the testimony of men
rather than that of God. Men who call
themselves scientific will often oppose the
small light of their intelligence to the
omniscience of God, and expect us to believe
them rather than the word of God,
who knows all things. They pretend to
know better than He who has made all
things. It often happens that they are not
certain themselves of what they say, and
change their opinions from year to year,
and with all that, they think they can
ridicule those who reject their notions, and
prefer to believe in God, who is all knowledge
and all truth. Because the motive of
our faith is the wisdom and truth of God,
our faith is a firm one. It is more certain
than any other truth which we get by our
own natural understanding.
An example
of this firmness of belief we see in Abraham,
"Who against hope believed in hope,
that he might be made the father of many
nations, according to that which was said to
him : So shall thy seed be. And he was not
weak in faith, . . . and therefore it was reputed
to him unto justice."
2 Abraham had been
promised by God that he should be the father
of many people; naturally speaking there
was every reason for him to doubt this
promise, but he never doubted the word of
God ; he knew that what God said must be
true, and that all that God promised must
be fulfilled, no matter how improbable it
might seem. This was the kind of faith that
God wanted, and "it was reputed to him unto
justice."
Let us learn from the example of
Abraham to believe firmly all that God
has revealed and proposes for our belief ;
His word is more than the intellect of any
man, or even of all men put together, for
He has made them all. The wisdom of
man will pass away, but God's word will
always be true. "Heaven and earth shall
pass, but My words shall not pass."
3


To be continued...


1 Num. 23. 19.
2 Rom. 4. 18-22.
3 Matt. 24. 35.

Javier
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Message  Javier le Mer 09 Oct 2019, 5:12 am

Because the motive of divine faith is the
veracity of God, it follows that our faith
must be universal,
i.e. we cannot have divine
faith unless we are willing to believe all
God has revealed.
This is clear in itself:
if we believe because God who is truth itself
has spoken, we must believe all that He has
revealed.
One who would believe some of
the truths which God has revealed, and reject
the others, would set himself up as a judge
of the truthfulness of God. Such a one
would, as St. Augustine said to the heretics
of his day, not believe God, but himself.
He would believe not because God revealed
the truth, but because the truth pleased him.
As if he said to God, "I will believe those
things which please me, and which I see to
be true, but I will not believe you when I
do not understand how that which you reveal
can be true."
Such a one would insult
God, and practically call Him a liar or
would at least say that it is possible for God
to be deceived or to deceive us. The same
must be said of him who, not wishing to
accept some truth which God has revealed,
denies that God has revealed it. Such a
man tries to produce in himself a voluntary
ignorance of what God has revealed. He
knows that God has made known this truth,
but he attempts to blind himself, that he
may be able to deny the truth which does
not please him.
If we wish to be faithful
to God, we must believe all that He has
revealed, and this because He can neither
deceive nor be deceived. We cannot set
our own reason above God, and judge of
what we wish to believe and what we do
not wish to believe. If we have divine faith,
we will believe all that God has made
known;
if we reject even one article, then
we have not the faith which comes from
God, for we believe our own reason and
not the word of God.
We must believe all
that God has revealed, even if it is above
our understanding. God's intellect is infinite;
He knows infinitely more than we
can understand.


To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Dim 13 Oct 2019, 5:29 am

If, therefore, God wishes to
make some of these truths known to us,
we must accept them with joy. Such truths
we call mysteries. God has revealed some
mysteries to us, such as the mystery of the
Blessed Trinity, i.e. that God is one in
nature but three in person, that each of
these persons is God, and that still there is
but one God. We cannot understand how
this is, but God, who is all truth, has said
so, therefore we believe it to be true. Faith
is obscure by its nature;
if we understood
all the truths that God makes known to us,
there would be no merit in faith, as we could
not but accept them ; but on account of the
darkness that surrounds the truths of faith,
we believe because of the truthfulness of
God, and not because we see these things
to be true ; this is real faith.
"Faith is the
substance of things to be hoped for, the evidence
of things that appear not."
1 If we
understood all that faith teaches us, we
would not hold these truths because of
God's truthfulness, but on account of our
understanding. This would destroy the
very nature of faith ; it would become natural
knowledge and cease to be faith; it
would destroy all merit. We do not think
that a man should be rewarded for admitting
that two and two are four; he cannot
help admitting it, because he sees that
it is true ;
but when we believe that in God
there are three persons, who are but one
God, we do not understand this truth, and
we accept it only because God has said
so. Such faith honors God and is deserving
of reward.



1 Heb. 11. 1.


To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Lun 21 Oct 2019, 1:56 pm

Faith is necessary for salvation, for "without
faith it is impossible to please God."
1
The virtue of faith is infused with sanctifying grace,
and hence no one can be saved without faith any more
than he can be saved without grace. Children are born deprived
of sanctifying grace; they are subject to
original sin, which they inherit from our
first parents, and unless they are baptized
they cannot enter the kingdom of heaven.
If they be baptized, they receive at the same
time with sanctifying grace, the virtue of
divine faith. Faith is therefore so necessary
that one cannot be saved, even if it is without
any fault of his own that he has not
faith. Such a one is not disposed for
eternal life, and he cannot obtain it any
more than a man can see without eyes.
Grown persons, i.e. they who have attained
the use of reason, must not only have the
virtue of faith, but they must also exercise
certain acts of faith, in order to obtain
eternal salvation. They must believe in
God, and must believe that God rewards
the good and punishes the wicked ;
according to the words of St. Paul, "He that
cometh to God, must believe that He is
and is a rewarder to them that seek Him."
2
In order to come to God one must know
the end to which he is tending; he must
know that God exists, and that if he be
faithful, God is to be his happiness. When
a sinner wishes to obtain justification, he
must be sorry for his sins out of a supernatural
motive, either because he has lost
heaven and deserved the punishments of
hell, or because he has offended God who
is all-good ; without the knowledge of God's
existence, and that God punishes the wicked
and rewards the good, he cannot have such
a supernatural motive.


1 Heb. 11. 6.
2 Heb. 11. 6.

To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Mer 30 Oct 2019, 8:13 am

By justification we approach God,
but in order to approach Him we must
first know that He exists;
we must long for Him as a reward. We
cannot seek God without knowing that He
exists, and we shall not seek Him unless we
expect a reward from Him for our fidelity.
These two things must therefore be believed
explicitly by every adult, so that if one is
ignorant of them, he cannot be saved even
if it be without his fault that he is ignorant
of them. Every adult must believe all that
God has revealed. He may not know all
that God has revealed; but he must be so
disposed that he is willing to believe all
God has made known, and he must try
to acquaint himself with the truths He has
revealed, especially that there are three
persons in God, and that the second person
became man and died to redeem us from sin.

It is therefore an obligation for us to know
the Christian doctrine, so that if we are,
through our own fault, ignorant of it, we
commit sin, and are not worthy of heaven.

It is also of the greatest importance for us
to listen to the instructions that are given
us, so that we may know the truths we
are to believe. God has made them known
to us ; if He has thought it necessary to reveal
these truths to us, we should at least
think it equally necessary to listen to His
voice and to learn those things which He
has found it necessary to teach us.

To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Dim 03 Nov 2019, 2:59 am

How do we know what God has revealed?
After we have seen the importance of believing
all that God has revealed, it is most
necessary to know where we can find those
truths. Christ came to redeem us from sin
and to show us the way to salvation. Our
Lord suffered and died; after His resurrection
He ascended into heaven. In order to
give a guide of faith to those who were to
come after Him, He established a Church
which is to teach all people in His name.
The Church of Christ, or the Catholic Church
which was founded by Jesus, is the ordinary
means by which men are to know the truths
revealed by God. To this Church all must
belong; this Church all must obey.
"He that
heareth you, heareth Me,"
1 said Our Lord
to the apostles. Although God may make
His truths known in some extraordinary way
to those who have no opportunity of hearing
the Church, the ordinary way for all people
is to accept the teaching of the Church and
to believe what she teaches because she
teaches in the name of Christ. When we
recite the Apostles' Creed and say, "I believe
in the holy Catholic Church,"
we profess
our belief in all that God has revealed
and proposes through the Church for our
belief.


1 Luke 10. 16.


To be continued...
Javier
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Message  Javier le Mer 20 Nov 2019, 7:12 am

We see, then, that faith is a divine virtue
infused into the soul with sanctifying grace
at Baptism, that it is supernatural, because
its source is the grace of God. The motive
of faith must be the truthfulness of God
and His wisdom.
From this it follows that
we cannot pass judgment upon what we are
to believe, and that we must believe all that
God has revealed, for His truthfulness stands
for all. We cannot accept some truths and
reject others.
We must believe, even though
we do not understand the truths we believe,
otherwise there would be no real faith, and
such acceptance of the truth would be
without all merit. This motive of belief, the
truthfulness and the wisdom of God, gives
to faith a greater firmness than even the
knowledge which we have naturally can give
us, because God's word is more certain than
our understanding.
Faith is necessary for
salvation ; without it we cannot approach
God.
Some truths we must believe explicitly,
i.e. we must know them and believe
them — such as that God exists and rewards
the good and punishes the wicked. These
we must know to be saved. Other truths
we are bound to know under pain of mortal
sin
— such as the principal doctrines of Christianity,
that there are three persons in one
God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy
Ghost; that the Son became man to save
us, etc. Finally, we must believe at least
implicitly, i.e. be ready to accept all that
God has revealed and proposes through the
Church for our belief.



If faith is so necessary for us that without
faith it is impossible to please God, we
should cultivate this virtue by frequent acts
of faith, we should make ourselves acquainted
with all that belongs to our religion, and hence
be regular at the instructions given concerning
the things we are to believe. We must pray for
the gift of faith and say with the apostles,
Increase our faith, O Lord! 1


1 Luke 17. 5.


To be continued...

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Message  Javier le Mer 27 Nov 2019, 6:05 am

VI - ON HOPE AND CHARITY


ON HOPE


What is hope?

Hope is a divine virtue by which we firmly trust that
God will give us eternal life and the means to obtain it.



In Baptism we receive sanctifying grace and
with it the divine virtues of faith, hope, and
charity. By sanctifying grace we are justified,
that is, by grace our sins are remitted,
and we are interiorly sanctified, we are
made children of God, and heirs of heaven.
As children of God we receive a supernatural
knowledge of Him by faith; as His children
and heirs of heaven we receive a supernatural
trust in Him, so that we hope without hesitation
that He will give us the inheritance
which He has promised to His children, and
will give us also the necessary grace to reach
heaven, as God's children, destined to be for
ever happy through the mercy of God. We
are given a supernatural love by which we
love Him above all things. These virtues
are infused into the soul together with sanctifying
grace and are a free gift of God ;
they always accompany grace, and belong
to the state of grace.
We have seen what
faith is and how necessary it is for salvation.
Faith is the foundation of hope. Because
through faith we know the power of God and
His infinite mercy, we trust in His fidelity,
and hence hope to receive the reward He
has promised to His children, as also the
means necessary to obtain the happiness
God has promised us.



To be continued...
Javier
Javier

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Date d'inscription : 26/02/2009

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DIVINE GRACE - Page 3 Empty Re: DIVINE GRACE

Message  Javier le Dim 01 Déc 2019, 7:36 am

Like faith, hope is a something
permanent put into our souls, not merely a
passing, momentary act, but something that
remains and inclines us to acts of hope. It
is a divine virtue because it comes entirely
from God, who puts it into our souls without
our having deserved it ; it has God for its
object, in as much as we hope to be happy
by possessing Him for all eternity; the
motive, too, is something pertaining to
God, namely His fidelity to His promises.



God has promised His children a great
reward; they are to possess Him for all
eternity. That they might tend toward
Him, as their ultimate end, He has infused
into their souls, together with sanctifying
grace, the knowledge of Himself and the
end for which they are created, and has
given them the virtue of hope to reach that
end, so that when they consider the greatness
of God and their own littleness they
may not faint by the wayside.
By the
virtue of hope they trust firmly that God
will give them the help necessary to reach
the end for which they are destined.



To be continued...
Javier
Javier

Nombre de messages : 3660
Localisation : Ilici Augusta (Hispania)
Date d'inscription : 26/02/2009

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