charismatic gifts


#1

Dear brothers and sisters in christ;

I have been asked by a member of pentecostal church why catholic church is ignoring or not giving significant attention to those of charismatic gifts of the holy spirit such as speaking with tongues , healing , professy etc. I tried to answer the question that we christians first of all should seek gifts such as the most important love as St Paul said all the laws are contained in love.
Need a full and detailed answer please.

with kind regards,
Aman:thumbsup:


#2

Hi Aman,

Beside the answers you will receive here, you may want to read/ask on the Catholic Charismatic Forum ccc.garg.com


#3

I think you gave a very good answer! It might be interesting to ask your pentecostal friend why the Pentecostal Church ignores or does not give significant attention to the Sacraments instituted by Christ, and the Corporate works of mercy. As a former Pentecostal, I can attenst that the viewpoint is myopic.


#4

I believe, too, with those who posted regarding charisimatic gifts that “love” is the the greatest sought after spiritual gift. In 1 Cor 13:13. “…the greatest [gift] is love.” How are we filled with this love? The sacraments are the source of all graces. In the Eucharist, we receive Him who is love in the form of bread and wine. When we have Holy Hour, we have a spiritual encounter with our Beloved Lord Jesus where His presence is veiled by the physical appearance of the tabernacle. We come away filled with Christ’s love and grace. When a soul is in the state of grace, Christ dwells within the soul, and the Holy Spirit also dwells within the soul. Gifts of the Holy Spirit pour forth frrom each grace-filled soul. Each person has different gifts. One person may have the gift for helping others. Another person may have the gift of administration. One may have the gift of song or music. All gifts are from the same Spirit and are for the building up of the Body of Christ (the Church).


#5

As a side note. Most of my family are or were Charismatic. I love the Carismatics, don’t get me wrong - that is may first round of Catholicism influence, but eventually led me away from the Catholic Church because of all the illicit practices. Almost everyone that was involved in the Charismatic Renewal are either practicing illicit things/mortal sins in the teachings of the Church, or defected or no longer practicing their faith at all. I believe in the gifts, but as you have stated, “LOVE” is by far the greatest of these gifts from what I understand. How is tongues helpful in a world that already communicates quite effectively. Not that they don’t exist, but doesn’t scripture also state clearly not to speak in tongue unless their is someone with the gift to interprest prophesy. I may have this a little twisted, but speaking in tongues would require someone to interpret what they are saying. Is that true? I’ve heard alleged tongues by people I know and doubt the authenticiy. But since I have seen miracles in my own life I feel that I should not judge those that believe they are experiencing the Holy Spirit in a profound way. However an act of genuine Love carries much more weight in my book. Self sacrificing love, like giving up something special to give more to the poor counts for more in my book. Sometimes people get caught up in the emotional high. I’ve heard and seen some things that may be genuine. Many of the saints live an ordinary life. Why can’t we just be ordinary. Did you ask your Pentecostal friends why they believe that they should prosper more as Christians. Doesn’t the scriptures tell us that we will suffer?

Marcus Grodi just had a panel of Pentecost and Assembly of God Minister converts. I sent that to my Aunt that claims to be a Catholic, but by her practices she is not. She sent me a very angry reply because my message politely reflected on what the Church teaches about double dipping into 2 faiths. I am leaving it alone now and will just keep our converstations to civil. She actively particiapates in a local Assembly of God and goes to mass to receive the Eucharist. She also clearly said that she rejects all “traditions” taught by all churchs. That actually means she doesn’t beleive anything, but for lack of a well formed concience who knows. I was not trying to offend her. I actually thought that she was now a member of the Assembly of God, but I was shocked that she said she was as Catholic as they get. That’s scary.

I’m still learning and struggling on who is faithful to the Majistirium. It’s a big puzzle to me.


#6

I believe there are dangers in getting too focussed on the “gifts.” I do believe sometimes some prayer expressions can be displays of excessive emotion (such as rolling on the ground). For tongues, I do believe some people have this gift. I believe in a group, there must be an interpreter. In private prayer, one might utter a tongue to God (words that only God understands). When I received a Baptism in the Holy Spirit, the couple who prayed over me, prayed in tongues and then I just fell backwards to the floor
(without getting hurt). To me this was an authentic experience of receiving the Holy Spirit. Of course, I had my confirmation in junior high school as well. This was the most important time of receiving the Holy Spirit since this is a sacrament, and I had the bishop’s anointing with holy oil. I believe there are many avenues to receiving God’s grace. However, we must discern with the help of the Holy Spirit what is of God or not. It is important that we remain obedient to the Church’s teachings. If anything draws us away from the Faith, then it is not of God. Many spiritual directors of various Catholic religious orders (i.e. the Jesuits) have a tool for discerning spirits.

Getting back to spiritual gifts. Mother Teresa had the spiritual gift of serving the poorest of the poor. St. Therese had the gift of contemplative prayer, as did St. Teresa of Avila. St. Anthony had the gift to be a great preacher, as did St. Bernardine of Siena. So you see, these saints who lived ordinary lives were empowered to serve others with extraordinary gifts that came from the Holy Spirit dwelling within them. All Christians have spiritual gifts in some way or form. Fr. Luke Zimmer, SSCC, once said that when we are baptized we receive spiritual gifts in an embryonic form. As we grow in a life of prayer and grace, these gifts increase all the more in a soul.

All gifts should be an expression of God’s love in the soul. All gifts are for the service of Jesus Christ Our Lord. Our Holy Mother, the Church (Roman Catholic Church) is where we will find the fullness of truth. We musn’t stray off to other Christian religions or teachings when we have our own Faith instituted by Jesus Christ. We will face challenges and many struggles throughout the times, but the Church will always stand firm forever. It will never fall apart or become extinct. For Jesus said to St. Peter, “Upon this rock I will build My Church and the gates of hell shall not prevail.” The Church is the Mystical Bride of Christ. Christ will never abandon Her.


#7

bernardinelee
If by “Faith” you mean Catholic Church I agree with you. However if not stated clearly, as in my own family (aunts and uncles), people will draw their own conclussions in spite of the teachings of the Catholic Church. Catholics can not “reject” Catholic teaching. Once that is done you place yourself out side of the Catholic Church and into a desert place that may lead to the hot place. I dare not elaborate because I’ve just discovered that my own family are in essence “cafateria Catholics” supercharged and that explains why I was so confused. I’ve met many spiritually strong people in other faiths. The Holy Spirit is active anywhere Baptism is present. I met a man born in a well known family of the Assembly of God that had the most amazing gift of song, both singing and writing. In the course of a few days he wrote about 20 songs and sang some of them to me. They were the best songs I had heard at that time. They were rich in meaning and reflective of intense spiritual needs in my life at that time while practicing Christianity in the churches of Christ - my wife’s family’s faith.

I’m laughing now because I was just talking to my wife about Peter and the Providince of God. Christ said he’d protect the Church and he has. What’s amazing is that even though I was baptized Catholic at 1 years old I was raised Protestant - non-denominational until I was almost 15 when I received my first communion. My on fire cafateria Catholic family seemed okay growing up and since no body corrected what I learned I even went through the seminary totally confused about many things. To cut this short I spent 31 years Protestant and 15 so far Catholic. But now I know Catholicism much more thoroughly after devoting the past 9 months into learning Catholic teachings.

What’s even more freightening is that I have a gift that I’m too embarrassed to elaborate on because of what it involves. I experience what seems to be contemplative prayer. I didn’t think a lay person could have such experiences, but after reading more about what that is I finally realized it. I have also witnessed many miracles in my life and the strangest prayers answered so clearly on a scale that leave no doubt in believing in God. I say this to confirm that I do believe in the gifts of the Holy Spirit. I’ve had very unique experiences that absolutely confirm the interaction of the Holy Spirit in our lives. I never really realized that all this was true until so many things that were impossible happened and have stood the test of time. My wife’s conversion is a miracle, and that is the least of the many miricals I’ve experienced.

It is best not to argue with non-Catholic Christians. They just don’t get it. Sure we should learn apologetics, but its not our sole obligation and neither does that fall on our head. We are lay people with limited time. The clergy should be more active and/or trained in apologetics to teach us as much as we can absorb not only to inspire us but to insure us that our beliefs are very grounded in scripture and valid Traditions rooted in the ancient historical Church. Protestants fall short of the fullness of the faith because of so many different reasons. It is just a miracle that any devoted Protestant would even open an ear to the Catholic teachings because they are usually taught to close their ears to it.

The Holy Spirit is alive and well. I experienced/saw several miracle over the past 3 years. It must be a world record that ended up converting my wife and I along with our oldest son. There is no question in my heart and mind now that Catholic Church is the the true original Church of Christ and the Protestant groups are really ecclesial communities that share some of the truth. Salvation is for everyone and we can not stand in the way of anyone’s salvation. That is up to God or we bring condemnation on ourselves. At least that what I understand now.


#8

You are on the right path in your response! Love is what matters and comes from the Holy Ghost. Just because someone does not have the ability to do the signs and wonders you mention means nothing. St. Augustine remarked on the charismatic gifts and why they ended after the beginnings of the church in regards to what was spoken of them in the Holy Scriptures. He mentioned that there was no longer a need for them to be used to spread the Gospel message, they were only there so that others my believe. Charismatic gifts as you mention do nothing to sanctify the individual directly, but they are there so that others may believe. Even immoral people may posses the “gift” of tounges or something similiar.
However, to have a charismatic gifts also DOES NOT relate to the “charismatic movement”. The wordk “charism” is often misued in recent times.
Here is some scripture…

Quoted from www.drbo.org

Matthew Ch 7: 21-19

*21 Not every one that saith to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven: but he that doth the will of my Father who is in heaven, he shall enter into the kingdom of heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day: Lord, Lord, have not we prophesied in thy name, and cast out devils in thy name, and done many miracles in thy name? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity. 24 Every one therefore that heareth these my words, and doth them, shall be likened to a wise man that built his house upon a rock, 25 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and they beat upon that house, and it fell not, for it was founded on a rock.

26 And every one that heareth these my words, and doth them not, shall be like a foolish man that built his house upon the sand, 27 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and they beat upon that house, and it fell, and great was the fall thereof. 28 And it came to pass when Jesus had fully ended these words, the people were in admiration at his doctrine. 29 For he was teaching them as one having power, and not as the scribes and Pharisees. *

Also, the actual gifts of the Holy Ghost are:
Wisdom
Understanding
Council
Fortitude
Knowledge
Piety
Fear of the Lord

From New Advent Catholic Encyclopedia:
newadvent.org/cathen/07409a.htm
They are in brief:
St. Paul (Galatians 5:22-23): “But the fruit of the Spirit is, charity, joy, peace, patience, benignity, goodness, longanimity, mildness, faith, modesty, continency, chastity.”


#9

I believe that these are truly the gifts of the Holy Spirit, just as you have listed them. I believe that holy souls have these gifts. Saintly souls like Mother Teresa. Saints such as St. Therese (the LIttle Flower), St. Teresa of Avila, and all the saints had these gifts. There are not only spiritual gifts, but there are natural gifts. The Holy Spirit works through all these gifts as one seeks to love God and to do the will of God and serve one’s neighbor.

When I was in religious life for a time, I learned that every religious order has a unique spiritual charism. From what I understand, this is a gift given to the community. It sets one community apart from another. For instance contemplative Benedictine religious are totally given to a life or prayer and work within the monastery. The Missionaries of Charity are totally given to serving Christ in the poorest of the poor. Then, there are teaching orders that are totally given to teaching children, adults, etc. When I was looking for my spiritual family, I went through a period of spiritual discernment where I visited various religious groups before I found my “spiritual family.” A Sister who is a contemplative religious would be out of place in the outside world picking up sick individuals off the streets of Calcutta. A Sister with an active vocation would be out of place in the cloister. She has the personality, the spiritual gifts, and natural talents for serving in an active religious order. So you see, all religious have different kinds of gifts and qualities. Yet, they serve the same Lord. Love is the motive for all their prayers and actions offered.

This also applies to the laity. We, too, are called to love God with all our heart, seeking to do His holy will in all things, and loving and serving our neighbor. We have spiritual gifts, natural gifts, unique personalities, and qualities which the Holy Spirit may work through in bringing about something beautiful for the glory of God.

We are all called to be instruments or vessels of the Lord. We are all called to holiness of life.


#10

Hi, Aman…

Try this for starters:
THE NATURE OF TONGUES, By Jimmy Akin
catholic.com/thisrock/1998/9804chap.asp

Up from Pentecostalism, By Kathleen M. Gavlas
catholic.com/thisrock/1995/9509fea1.asp

And from Jimmy Akin’s Blog:

Prophecy
jimmyakin.typepad.com/defensor_fidei/2007/01/prophecy.html

The Gift Of Tongues
jimmyakin.typepad.com/defensor_fidei/2005/09/a_reader_writes.html

Cessation Of Tongues?
jimmyakin.typepad.com/defensor_fidei/2005/09/cessation_of_to.html

I’d like to find more resources from Tim Staples, as well, but don’t have the time this morning. Perhaps someone else could find you some good links.


#11

Amen! I have been telling others of my experience after receiving the baptism in the Holy Spirit. What this did was to release the gifts that I received at confirmation. My faith life went from run of the mill to one that is on fire! I am compelled by the Holy Spirit to spread the Gospel. I can’t stop! Since then, it is utterly amazing how many fallen away Catholics he has sent. It is also clear that the Lord is revealing the truth to Mormons.

Please investigate this service of the charismatic movement, as it harkens back to the twelve and their miraculous works.

Praise our Lord Jesus Christ.


#12

It is to remember that in the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, for Catholics and Orthodox it is a stirring up of every gift and charism given to us at Baptism, Chrismation/Confirmation, each time we have received Eucharist, and for our clergy - Holy Orders. It is our accepting the grace given to us by God in his ‘life giving Holy Spirit’. This Baptism stirs into action as a flame burning out the chaff of the wheat that we become bread to serve and fill the body of Christ. Nothing that is given or stirred up in this action is for the person, except that it helps us to grow in Jesus Christ, that we may serve in a greater way, Christ’s people and the building of his kingdom on this earth through conversion of souls. For we all are sinners and all fall short of the Glory of God.

Christ’s first Words to his Apostles were:

" On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’ When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.’ And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.’ " John 20:19-23
On the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit comes upon the Apostles in the very place where they were invested with their priestly charge by Christ in person. There is a very close link between the Sacrifice of Christ and the coming of the Holy Spirit. When the Spirit enters the Church, it is to fortify us in the witness that we are to give to the Truth that is Christ in person: the Holy Spirit is given to us in order that we might be affirmed in our faith in the Truth to which we are to testify, following Christ. If the mission of Christ continues and is accomplished daily in the Church, it is thanks to the aid and the strength of the Spirit who was given to us! This is why, after saying, “As the Father has sent me, even so I send you,” the Lord blew upon the Apostles to give them the Holy Spirit: "He breathed on them, and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit.’ "

meynen.homily-service.net/ye2003/bpentsun.htm


#13

What a beautiful sharing about the charismatic gits. Thank you.

Bernardine Lee


#14

From
“Secretes of the Interior Life” – Archbishop Luis M. Martinez,

quote
"The ways of God are not our ways and the spiritual life is almost the contrary of what we fancy it."

“Your lowliness, not your virtue, attracts God”

When we have the misfortune to fall, we certainly commit an act of ingratitude toward Him who loves us so much. But at the same time, our misery is brought to light, shame at seeing our misery and our baseness exposed. Yet the misery possesses the mysterious privilege of attracting our Lord. This is difficult to understand, yet it is an incontestable truth. Our nothingness and our misery constitute the force that attracts our Lord. Oh, foolish people that we are, who believe that it is our natural talents, our good works, and our virtues that attract our Lord; and who, therefore, often wish to parade all this when we present ourselves before Him.

If I may be pardoned the expression, I would say that all this is a species of “spiritual show.” As village maids think that putting on showy ribbons is the way to be elegant and the way to attract attention in society, so souls who suffer from this “spiritual show” – and they are legion – wish also to bedeck themselves with showy ribbons and to present themselves before our Lord gaudily attired with their pretend virtues and good points. This is the fault that the Pharisee in the Gospel suffered from when he came before God and, Standing, began to say, “I fast twice in the week; I give tithes. I am not like the rest of men.” Spiritual show! We already know our Lord’s judgment of the Pharisee, and His commendation of the poor publican.

Treat your soul gently, as God does
Who would find this easy to believe: that mildness is just as necessary as force, perhaps even more so, to become a saint? Mildness is not weakness; rather, it is an indication of strength. Weak souls do their works with noise and show; the strong operate with marvelous gentleness. Life is as strong as it is gentle; love is as powerful as it is delicate. Hence, the action of God upon nature, in history, and on souls is infinitely mighty and infinitely mild. We, being weak creatures rush; but God works slowly, because He deals with eternity. We bewail the passage of minutes; but God serenely watches the flow of years. We wish to achieve the goal of our desires with a single rush; but God prepares His work gently, nor does our inconstancy weary Him, nor do our failures startle Him, nor do the complicated vicissitudes of human life overturn His eternal designs.

Conversions are prodigies of gentleness, such as was St. Augustine’s. The long stages necessary for union are prodigies of gentleness, such paths as St. Teresa traveled. Great missions from God are also prodigies of gentleness, such as was St. Margaret Mary Alacoque’s. If we knew how to study the divine action in every saint, in every soul, we would be astonished, perhaps more at the gentleness than at the power of the sanctifying action.

Gentleness is indispensable for us if we are to become holy; and this we frequently forget. Undoubtedly many souls do not sanctify themselves because of a lack of power; but many also, indeed very many, fail to do so because of a want for gentleness.

The human soul is precious and delicate. It came forth from the divine lips as a most gentle breath. It is cleansed and rendered beautiful with the divine Blood of Jesus; and it is destined to be united with God Himself to participate in the life and in the ineffable mystery of the Most Blessed Trinity.

Such an exquisite jewel must be handled with consummate delicacy. That is how God treats it, and that is how we should treat it. What an atmosphere of purity of mind, of peace, and of delicacy ought to surround a soul for it to achieve its sanctification! When the soul is borne to another atmosphere, how it pines, how it laments! It is like those beautiful and delicate flowers which a strong wind withers or the heat of the sun discolors and parches.

I think that the greater part of the spiritual ills of souls who seek perfection comes from a lack of gentleness. Gentleness is needful to those poor, ever-disquieted souls. Desirous of holiness, they wish to achieve it all at once. They cannot countenance their own miseries, they grow angry at their weaknesses and with an overrefinement of ingenuity, they continually worry and grieve themselves.

continued on next post


#15

Unknowingly and proud, they have not discovered the secret of mildness, the daughter of love, which is patient and benign. If they possessed this secrete, they would understand that one arrives at perfection by paths that are strewn with imperfections, which must be borne with humility; that when a soul falls, it does not arise with agitation, but gently places itself in the merciful hands of God by means of humility and trust in Him; that God does not as for the perfection of our conduct, but for the perfection of our heart, as the wonderfully mild St. Francis De Sales so admirably teaches us.

Do Not Seek God in Consolation
The first reason it is difficult for us to communicate with God is this: He is “a hidden God.” He has always been thus, even in the days of His mortal life.

How often we grieve over not having lived in the time when Jesus was on the earth! Then we would have known and loved Him, and we would have lived with Him. But even then it was not so easy to know Jesus. Even His very Apostles, who had such intimate contact with Him – how imperfectly they understood Him and loved Him before the Passion! And why? Because always, even in the days of His mortal life, Jesus is a hidden God. But He conceals Himself so that we may seek Him, and to those who seek Him, He manifests Himself clearly, as the Scripture tells us.

How does one seek Jesus? How does one find Him? First of all, there are eyes that always find Him, because they discover Him wherever His is, and no matter how hidden He may be; they are the eyes of faith.

Faith never fails; it never errs; it is infallible. But since it is obscure, it rarely satisfies. We would like to find Jesus, but in our own way, for our thoughts are not His thoughts, nor our ways His ways. For this reason St. John of the Cross says that the great means of arriving at contemplation is obscure faith. The core of the saint’s teaching is that we must go to God by obscure faith without any sensible pleasure. But it is a way that is not pleasing to us, since we would like to feel God’s presence and enjoy His sensible consolations.

We are so dull that, as St. Paul says, we do not know what we should ask for; we do not even know what we ought to desire. It would be stupidity to wish to govern our own destiny and to say, “Now I need consolation; now aridity.” Let us leave to God, who loves us, the work of forming us.

If it were up to us, we would ask for everything except dryness and desolations. And if we would ask for them, it would be rarely, not understanding that they are necessary in order that the divine seed may germinate and develop in the soil of our heart. The best thing is to place ourselves in the hands of God, so that He may give us His grace and His love; and that, as St. Ignatius says, ought to be sufficient for us.

There is no doubt that consolations are good, provided that God gives them; but they are dangerous. Since we cling to them very easily, from the very start our heart needs to be detached from everything, even from spiritual comforts, if we wish to unite ourselves to God. The only thing that the heart should attach itself to is God. Created things always contain a dangerous element, for in attaching ourselves to them, we withdraw from God. And even the graces of God are created things.

and, again, continued on next post


#16

Rely On Faith, Not On Feelings
It is not my intention at this time to speak of the importance that the spirit of faith has in the spiritual life, or of the necessity of judging everything with a supernatural rule, or of performing all our works with aims and intentions of the same order. This is what I wish to insist upon and to call attention to in an empathic manner; the chief reason we disregard faith is our preconceived idea that we must feel God and divine things. Although we know speculatively that God is not felt, practically we hold the contrary.

Do we feel a sacrament producing its proper effect? Do we feel the increase of grace in our soul? Do we feel the death of the soul by sin and its resurrection by sacramental absolution? Do we feel the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist in such a way that if we did not perceive Him sensibly, we would not believe in it?

Without doubt there are times when our Lord allows Himself to be sensibly felt, yet it is not precisely grace that is felt, but often something else that accompanies it. We go to Confession to a priest who simply listens to our sins, gives penance, and absolves; and we feel nothing. We go to another who understands us, who helps us in our disclosures to him, who gives us helpful advice; and we feel such a peace and refreshment that upon arising, we seem to be other beings. Was it the grace of the sacrament that we felt? No. It was the profitable experience that we had with the second priest.

To be conscious of a thing and to feel it sensibly are not the same thing; neither is one’s whole spiritual life a thing of continual conscious awareness. If we read the life of St. Therese of the Child Jesus with attention, we shall be convinced that she experienced delight only a very few times in her spiritual life, and that she rarely enjoyed sensible consolation [with God]. She lived by faith, by the obscurity of faith, and she is one of the most marvelous examples of that life of faith.

How many of us, on the other hand, when we go to prayer and experience consolation, come forth content with the assurance that God loves us a great deal? But if we do not feel Him, we come forth brokenhearted, sadly thinking that He has no regard for us, or that we have none of Him. And simply because we do not feel Him!

The first secret in finding our Loud is faith. He does not hide Himself from the gaze of faith, nor can He elude it. Faith never has obstacles; it pierces all veils. If only we would understand the secret of living by faith, of going to God by the way of obscure faith!

We approach the tabernacle, and we feel nothing, just as though we were drawing near an empty tabernacle. We say, “Jesus is here,” but it is as though we were pronouncing words in an unknown language, for they move not a single fiber of our heart. But faith assures us that God is there, and if we would comport ourselves in harmony with what faith tells us, how different our prayer would be! We speak to Jesus, but we do not feel that He is listening to us, or that He is answering us. But faith tells us that Jesus listens to us and that He speaks to us, and that He needs neither external sounds nor extraordinary means in order to speak with us. He is the divine Master, who speaks and instructs without the noise of words. And if faith assures me that Jesus hears me, speaks to me, and loves me, then delights and consolations are not necessary – no, not anything at all.

The obscurity of faith, to be sure, does not accommodate itself to our sensible tastes. We would desire, above all else, to feel; and faith is not for feeling and savoring, but for knowing.

“I do not find God,” you may say. You do not find Him according to your way – that is, in a sensible manner. But do you believe? If you have faith, you already know that God does not stand far from you, because in Him we live and move and are; because He surrounds us on the right hand and on the left, above and below; because He penetrates us and lives by grace in the most intimate part of our soul; because He is present in that flower, in that fragrance, in that ray of light in that glorious sky, everywhere. Consequently, if we know how to profit from faith and to live by faith, we would always find God, and thus we would have solved our problem; we would have discovered the great secret of the interior life. end quote


#17

and a quote from:
Saint John of the Cross, Doctor of the Church, “Ascent of Mount Carmel”

  1. And if it is true that, for the reasons already described, it behoves the soul to close its eyes to the aforementioned revelations which come to it, and which concern the propositions of the faith, how much more necessary will it be neither to receive nor to give credit to other revelations relating to different things, wherein the devil habitually meddles so freely that I believe it impossible for a man not to be deceived in many of them unless he strive to reject them, such an appearance of truth and security does the devil give them? For he brings together so many appearances and probabilities, in order that they may be believed, and plants them so firmly in the sense and the imagination, that it seems to the person affected that what he says will certainly happen; and in such a way does he cause the soul to grasp and hold them, that, if it have not humility, it will hardly be persuaded to reject them and made to believe the contrary. Wherefore, the soul that is pure, cautious, simple and humble must resist revelations and other visions with as much effort and care as though they were very perilous temptations. For there is no need to desire them; on the contrary, there is need not too desire them, if we are to reach the union of love. It is this that Solomon meant when he said:˜What need has a man to desire and seek things that are above his natural capacity? [455] As though we were to say: He has no necessity, in order to be perfect, to desire supernatural things by supernatural means, which are above his capacity.

#18

Yes, this really helps me to see how spiritual consolations can distract us from God if we focus on them and make a show of them for all to see (like the pharisees). Truly, we are to be emptied of ourselves (all egocentric behaviors) if we are to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Our Blessed Mother is a beautiful example of gentleness and humility. I pray to become more like her as I grow in the spiiitual life.

It is true that we own only our personal sinfulness. Jesus comes to us when we are broken in spirit, wounded, brought low. For a humble, contrite heart the Lord will not spurn.

Thank you for sharing.


#19

There is a strong Charismatic Renewal within the Catholic Church. It is important to note, as stated in many of the posts, the gifts are for the upbuilding of the whole Church.
God does give each of us many gifts and it is important to be open to those gifts. At Cursillo, one of the speakers referred to the creation of Adam in Sistine Chapel. Adam and God are touching fingers when in reality gifts are lavished upon each of us by our creator. The gifts given during the Baptism of the Spirit are the same gifts each of us received in Baptism and Confirmation. The Baptism of the Spirit is not a new Sacrament, but instead allows us to open the gifts that each of us have already received. For one it may be a gift of service, another the gift of intercessory prayer. Gifts may be manifested by speaking in tongues or prophesy. These gifts are given as God himself chooses and are not a reward for personal holiness.
The Catholic Church does allow us to worship with other denominations within specific criteria. Before I attend an Assembly of God service, for instance, I must attend Mass. I receive the Eucharist only within the Catholic Church. There has been ecumenical and evangelitic benefit in this. It helps remove misunderstanding about what the Catholic Church actually teaches.
At all times, regardless of gifts received, the focus is on our relationship with Jesus Christ and each other. Afterall, “what husband wants to be married only for his money, or the gifts he gives?”


#20

It is true. The gifts are given for the building up of the Church, the Kingdom of God. They are not for our glory! However, I marvel at how the Holy Spirit works in people who have a deep faith grounded in Jesus Christ. I can’t help but see the beauty of God in the beautiful example of Mother Teresa of Calcutta. She had a deep, deep faith and love of Jesus. She was humble and bore heavy crosses, I’m sure. Christ touched those poor souls lying in the streets dying through Mother Teresa and her religious. It is so beautiful what God does in the life of a soul who is committed, completely given to Him.

Bernardine Lee


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