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Madonna del Libro (Madonna of the Book), ca. 1483, Sandro Botticelli (1445–1510); Museo Poldi Pezzoli collection, Milan.

What the world is in particular need of today is the credible witness of people enlightened in mind and heart by the word of the Lord, and capable of opening the hearts and minds of many to the desire for God and for true life, life without end.”

Pope Benedict XVI, Apostolic Letter, Porta fidei, October 2011

Coming to Him to Have Life

Lent is a time of reflection, a time to ask what we are in need of to grow in the spiritual life. It is the season where we are invited to examine ourselves and ask God how we can turn our heart to him and grow closer so that we may die to oneself to live in God. 

St. Cyril of Jerusalem is an early Church Father. His influence on Christianity is still felt today as he is one of the most important sources for how the early Church celebrated the liturgy and sacraments. He is held in high esteem by both the Catholics and the Orthodox.

His 4th century writings are a reminder to us for what it means to live a Christian life. As he says, "the indwelling [of the Holy Spirit] makes your mind into a divine house." 

In the hustle and bustle of the day with our preoccupations and responsibilities - at work and at home - in our interactions with family, friends, and strangers, we can often fall short of Jesus' exhortation that we be perfect, as our Heavenly Father is perfect (cf. Matt 5:48). Yet it's in the daily events of our lives, those seemingly insignificant interactions we may have with others, or alone, in our own thoughts and choices, that we are called to be holy.

We are called to transform ourselves into an image of God’s own holiness. By doing so we may transform the entire world into the kingdom of God.

For words of wit and wisdom from Saint Cyril of Jerusalem (d. 386 A.D.), please enjoy below.

Peace be with you!

Author, Reason2bCatholic

Coming to Him to have life

You have come into the nets of the Church. Be caught! Stop fleeing! For is not Jesus catching you, not that you might die, but that in dying you might be made alive? For it is necessary for you to die and to rise. For you have heard the Apostle saying, dead to sin but living to righteousness. Die, then, to sins, and live to righteousness! From today on, live!

See with me the great dignity Jesus gives to you! You were called a catechumen, one who hears only externally, hearing hope but not knowing it, hearing mysteries but not understanding, hearing the Scriptures but not knowing their depth. But now you hear internally, not externally. For the indwelling Spirit makes your mind into a divine house. When you hear what has been written concerning the mysteries, then you understand what you did not know. And do not think that what you receive is a little thing. You, being a pitiable person, are receiving the name of God. Hear Paul saying, God is faithful (1 Cor 1:9). Hear another writing, saying, God is faithful and just (1 Jn 1:9). Foreseeing this, that is, that people were to receive the name of God, the Psalmist spoke in the person of God, saying, I have said, you are all gods and children of the Most High (Ps 82:6). But see that with the name of faithful you do not have an unfaithful intention. Having entered the race, walk the walk! You do not have another opportunity such as this. If the days of your wedding were coming, would you not regard all other things lightly, and become focused on preparation for the feast?

From today on abstain from every evil thing. Let your tongue not speak insignificant words, nor let your sight look at sin, nor let your mind wander toward what is not profitable.

Credit: From Lectures on the Christian Sacraments: The Procatechesis and the Five Mystagogical Catecheses Ascribed to St. Cyril of Jerusalem, Maxwell E. Johnson, Tr. © 2017, St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, Yonkers, NY.

Information herein posted under the "rules of fair use" to foster education and discussion in accordance with Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976.

Christianity is not a system of ethics; it is a life. It is not good advice; it is divine adoption. Being a Christian does not consist in just being kind to the poor, going to church, singing hymns, or serving on parish committees, though it includes all of these. It is first and foremost a love relationship with Jesus Christ.”

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
Jesus Christ with a sword - painted icon
Jesus Christ with a sword – painted icon

When the desire for God touches men’s hearts the world will be made anew.  For a man is called to be another Christ.  What the world is in need of today is real manhood in the image and likeness of God Incarnate, Jesus Christ.  Men:  This is the challenge of our time.  It is the challenge of our Age.”

Author, Reason2bCatholic

Mary, seat of wisdom

Mary - seat of wisdom

Faith resembles a lamp. As a lamp lights the whole house, so the light of faith illumines the whole soul.”

Saint John Chrysostom
La_Vierge_au_lys - Bouguereau
The Virgin of the Lilies (French: La Vierge au lys) is an oil painting by the French artist William-Adolphe Bouguereau, painted in 1899, and now owned by a private owner.

Mary, Seat of Wisdom, pray for us.

Be not afraid!  And may the peace of Christ be with you and your loved ones today and always.  Holy Family, pray for us.  Amen.

The Holy Family, Murillo
The Heavenly and Earthly Trinities (c. 1675-82) by Bartolomé Esteban Murillo (1617 – 1682)

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