Friday, July 29, 2016

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 173.

YOUCAT Question n. 173 - Why do we need sacraments in the first place?   

(Youcat answer) We need sacraments in order to outgrow our petty human life and to become like Jesus through Jesus: children of God in freedom and glory.       

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1129) The Church affirms that for believers the sacraments of the New Covenant are necessary for salvation (Cf. Council of Trent (1547): DS 1604). "Sacramental grace" is the grace of the Holy Spirit, given by Christ and proper to each sacrament. The Spirit heals and transforms those who receive him by conforming them to the Son of God. The fruit of the sacramental life is that the Spirit of adoption makes the faithful partakers in the divine nature (Cf. 2 Pet 1:4) by uniting them in a living union with the only Son, the Savior.      

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) In Baptism the fallen children of men become cherished children of God; through Confirmation the weak become strong, committed Christians; through Penance the guilty are reconciled; through the Eucharist the hungry become bread for others; through Matrimony and Holy Orders individualists become servants of love; through the Anointing of the Sick the despairing become people of confidence. The sacrament in all the sacraments is Christ himself. In him we men, lost in seLfishness, grow and mature into the true Life that has no end.     

 (CCC Comment)    

(CCC 2003) Grace is first and foremost the gift of the Spirit who justifies and sanctifies us. But grace also includes the gifts that the Spirit grants us to associate us with his work, to enable us to collaborate in the salvation of others and in the growth of the Body of Christ, the Church. There are sacramental graces, gifts proper to the different sacraments. There are furthermore special graces, also called charisms after the Greek term used by St. Paul and meaning "favor," "gratuitous gift," "benefit" (Cf. LG 12). Whatever their character - sometimes it is extraordinary, such as the gift of miracles or of tongues - charisms are oriented toward sanctifying grace and are intended for the common good of the Church. They are at the service of charity which builds up the Church (Cf. 1 Cor 12).       

(The next question is: Why is faith in Jesus Christ not enough? Why does God give us the sacraments, too?)  

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