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Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Indwelling of the Holy Trinity Part Two-charity


One of the marks of the real Christian is charity. Serenity in the face of interruptions to our lives or inconveniences caused by the real needs of others shows us the presence of charity in our hearts and minds.

In addition, as Garrigou-Lagrange tells us, only those who live in charity keep the Indwelling of the Holy Trinity. Why is that? That we receive the Trinity in Baptism and Confirmation marks us as Christians. That we preserve this Life of God in us means that we must cooperate with grace, sanctifying grace given only through the Sacraments.


There is no other way to obtain sanctifying grace except through the Sacramental Life of the Church. There is no running around the goal post in order to score. When the Church teaches that we are all saved through the merits of the Catholic Church, this is partly what is being taught.

How sad that several generations of Catholics think they will get to heaven just because they are good.
There is no other way to obtain sanctifying grace except through the Sacramental Life of the Church. There is no running around the goal post in order to score. When the Church teaches that we are all saved through the merits of the Catholic Church, this is partly what is being taught.

How sad that several generations of Catholics think they will get to heaven just because they are “good”. This is not the teaching of Christ or the Church.

Many of the Church Fathers in the earliest centuries of our theology have pointed out the fact that the Holy Trinity dwells in those who are “in charity”. This means that if one “abides in Love”, as taught by St. John the Evangelist, and practices that Love (practice means pragmatic, that is reality, doing things, not merely feeling, but duty).

There are stages of love, just as there are stages of the interior life. Pope Benedict XVI in his encyclical on love, explains the different types, which have been mentioned on this blog as well. But, a married couple, for example, move from the romance of eros, to the self-dying pure love of giving without expectation, that is, Divine Love. A couple may have a life-time to learn this type of self-giving. But, the mark of the Christian is just this same type of charity.


Above is an icon of the Transfiguration. Christ left the glory of the Trinity to share Himself with us in the Incarnation. The ultimate charity is sharing who we are with others, not merely what we have materially. We have the lives of the saints to show us charity in action. We need only think of the Little Flower and her little way of accepting daily crosses and offering up sufferings to God. We have the charity of the great St. Vincent de Paul, or the love in action of St. Francis travelling to the Saladin in order to convert him. We have the example of the French Jesuits, who even after returning to France, came back to the States and were killed in horrible ways. But, charity can mean the simple acceptance of the loved one for who he or she is. The acceptance of another human being, the recognition and encouragement of that person's uniqueness and gifts, is also charity.


1 comment:

New Sister said...

I needed to hear this. I have much dying to do for God to have a temple within me.

OK: we are saved only through the Church - knew that. But through "the merits" of the Catholic Church? Because Christ has redeemed her, His Bride? I've *really* got studying to do, these posts are making me realize.