As this is the Feast of the Holy Trinity, it is appropriate to concentrate on the way of perfection. Remember that from baptism, we all have the Indwelling of the Trinity within us, with us daily, unless we lose this presence through mortal sin.
I have morphed the Manning mini-series into the Perfection II series, as I did with the meditations on
Angela. Is it not interesting that all the great saints and great minds of the
Church come to the same conclusion regarding the way to perfection?
The last two main ideas to cover in this section on the gift of counsel involve the “law of liberty” and the taming of the will.
Firstly, the law of liberty is misunderstood, or not even considered by many Catholics. Here is Manning: “…if we desire to be sanctified, if we desire to be conformed to the likeness of our Divine Lord and His Immaculate Mother,--then the gift of counsel and the prompting of generous love will make us press onward and rise higher in the spiritual life.”
Manning reminds us that the words of the Sermon on the Mount, the way of perfection, were not spoken to monks, religious in cloisters or recluses, but to men on the mountain-to all of us.
“The Sermon on the Mount is the law of perfection given to the Christian people of the world; it is given to you Our Divine Master calls us to use our liberty as Christians, to rise above the low level of that which is absolutely necessary by the law of commandments, and to ascend up by the law of liberty towards Him, upon the mountain where He, our Light and our Life, dwells eternally.”
Cardinal Manning rightly emphasizes that the Sermon on the Mount created Christendom, and Christendom has fallen into ruin because of the loss of vision, the sins, which contradict the way of perfection.
I must quote Manning on this point: “Tell me where is to be found the Sermon on the Mount; where is to be found voluntary poverty, where is to be found obedience even unto death, where the spirit of the martyrs, where the self-denial of the confessors, where the meekness of the forgiving, and the mercy of those who dies for their brethren? These things are to be found wheresoever the law of liberty and the gift of cunsel are the light and the guidance of men. “
To be continued tomorrow….