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CHRISTIAN NATURALNESS Being coherent PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 30 April 2009 09:43
CHRISTIAN NATURALNESS Being coherent Christians in all the situations of life. The trial of Stephen unleashed a great persecution against the Church. In today’s reading, the story of his apostolate and his martyrdom is told (cf Acts 6:8-15). Stephen was filled with grace and power and began to work miracles and great signs among the people. The same means, almost the same words, as were used against Jesus were used against him. We have heard him say that Jesus the Nazarene is going to destroy this place and alter the traditions that Moses handed down to us. Stephen proclaimed bravely his belief in the risen Jesus. And even if Our Lord does not ask us for our lives as he asked Stephen, he is an example to us of a coherent Christian life, lived naturally and openly, undeterred by false scandals or by what people might say. We have to expect that at times people will judge us in a twisted manner because they fail to understand the nature of a Christian way of acting or many of the loving demands of Christ’s doctrine. We would then have to imitate Our Lord and his faithful followers, even if it meant giving our life for him — acting with serenity, leading a Christian life with all its consequences. Doubtless it would be more comfortable to adapt ourselves to these pagan situations and lifestyles, but if we did we could not continue to be faithful disciples of Jesus. Such situations, in which we need firmness of character and fortitude in the faith can arise anywhere — in the university, at work, or in the place where we go on holiday with the family. In their public activities Catholics should be inspired by the criteria and Gospel objectives lived and interpreted by the Church. Legitimate diversity of opinion in temporal matters should not detract from the necessary agreement of Catholics in defending and promoting values and projects of life derived from the morality of the Gospel (Spanish Episcopal Conference, Witnesses to the living God, 28 June 1985). Catholics must reject any fear of causing upset if, on account of living as faithful disciples of our Lord, their behaviour is adversely interpreted or clearly rejected. One who would hide his Christian personality in the midst of an environment of pagan customs would be giving in to human respect, and would do well to remember to hear those words of Jesus: He who denies me before men, I will also deny him before my Father who is in heaven (Matt 10:32). Do you know what is the first temptation the devil presents to someone who has begun to serve God better? asks the Curé d’Ars — It is human respect (St Jean Vianney – The Curé d’Ars, Homily on Temptations). What is our behaviour like when we are with our friends, at work, at a social gathering? Do we show our condition as sons and daughters of God with simplicity and daring? With permission from Scepter UK. Short excerpt from IN CONVERSATION WITH GOD by Francis Fernandez. Available at SinagTala or Totus Bookstore 723-4326 or at www.totusbookstore.com (info@totusbookstore.com) To subscribe or unsubscribe, please email info@defensoresfidei.com. The DEFENSORES FIDEI FOUNDATION actively spreads Ecclesial Information, Catechetical Instructions and Apologetics in pursuit of making good Catholics better Catholics. Any contribution to help this apostolate is heaven-sent and now TAX-DEDUCTIBLE (in USA). Please visit us at www.defensoresfidei.com.
 

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"I have six locks on my door all in a row. When I go out, I lock every other one. I figure no matter how long somebody stands there picking the locks, they are always locking three."--Elayne Boosler