Sunday, July 8, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 497.

YOUCAT Question n. 497 - Why does it help to turn to the saints when we pray?

(Youcat answer) Saints are people who are aflame with the Holy Spirit; they keep God’s fire burning in the Church. Even during their earthly life, the saints prayed ardently, in a way that was contagious. When we are close to them, it is easy to pray. Of course, we never worship saints; we are allowed, though, to call on them in heaven, so that they may present petitions for us at the throne of God.   

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2683) The witnesses who have preceded us into the kingdom (Cf. Heb 12:1), especially those whom the Church recognizes as saints, share in the living tradition of prayer by the example of their lives, the transmission of their writings, and their prayer today. They contemplate God, praise him and constantly care for those whom they have left on earth. When they entered into the joy of their Master, they were "put in charge of many things" (Cf. Mt 25:21). Their intercession is their most exalted service to God's plan. We can and should ask them to intercede for us and for the whole world.   

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Around the great saints developed particular schools of spirituality, which like the colors of the spectrum all point to the pure light of God. They all start with a fundamental element of the faith, so as to lead-in each case by a different gate-to the center of the faith and devotion to God. Thus Franciscan spirituality starts with poverty of spirit, Benedictine spirituality with the praise of God, and Ignatian spirituality with discernment and vocation. A spirituality to which someone feels attracted, depending on his personal character, is always a school of prayer.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2684) In the communion of saints, many and varied spiritualities have been developed throughout the history of the churches. The personal charism of some witnesses to God's love for men has been handed on, like "the spirit" of Elijah to Elisha and John the Baptist, so that their followers may have a share in this spirit (Cf. 2 Kings 2:9; Lk 1:1; PC 2).  A distinct spirituality can also arise at the point of convergence of liturgical and theological currents, bearing witness to the integration of the faith into a particular human environment and its history. The different schools of Christian spirituality share in the living tradition of prayer and are essential guides for the faithful. In their rich diversity they are refractions of the one pure light of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit is truly the dwelling of the saints and the saints are for the Spirit a place where he dwells as in his own home since they offer themselves as a dwelling place for God and are called his temple (St. Basil, De Spiritu Sancto, 26, 62: PG 32, 184).

(The next question is: Can you pray anywhere?)

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