85 – Who teaches us how to love? The Holy Spirit alone. You can take a thousand courses in catechesis or spirituality, or a thousand courses in yoga or Zen – but all of this will never be able to give you the freedom of the Son

In the Acts of the Apostles, we find the intriguing story of an Ethiopian, minister of the Queen of Candace, who had traveled to Jerusalem to adore the true God. However, this high functionary of the court returned to his country full of uncertainties with respect to the Scriptures, which he meditated on without grasping their true meaning. As he traveled in his carriage, reading the book of the Prophet Isaiah, he paused at this part: “Though he was harshly treated, he submitted and opened not his mouth; Like a lamb led to the slaughter or a sheep before the shearers, he was silent and opened not his mouth. Oppressed and condemned, he was taken away, and who would have thought any more of his destiny? When he was cut off from the land of the living, and smitten for the sin of his people” (Is 53:7-8).

The same Holy Spirit who had inspired his desire to understand the good news about Jesus Christ, also prepared a marvelous response to his questions: He sent Deacon Philip to instruct him in the faith, urging him to approach the carriage. Here, we have the description from the Acts themselves: “Philip ran up and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and said, ‘Do you understand what you are reading?’ He replied, ‘How can I, unless someone instructs me?’ So he invited Philip to get in and sit with him” (Acts 8:30-31).

Then, Philip explained the truth about Jesus Christ, and his words opened the soul of the man to the faith so effectively, that he requested baptism at that very moment. After fulfilling his mission, the Holy Spirit transported Philip to evangelize in the city of Azotus, while “the eunuch saw him no more, but continued on his way rejoicing” (Acts 8:39).

This episode of the early Church shows how God works. He inspires souls, so that some instruct others; consequently, hearts are moved toward the realization of the divine plan. This habitual manner of divine actuation explains the indispensable necessity that the Church has in the preaching of catechesis.

There are those who profess the direct actuation of the Holy Spirit in souls, regardless of doctrinal teaching. Of course, this could happen – and in fact sometimes does, as we read in the lives of saints – but these kinds of extraordinary methods do not abolish the normal ones, which may certainly not be compared, even casually, with other ‘methods’ that are gravely contrary to the Christian religion. As such, it is advantageous that we profoundly study this theme, finding the responses we need in the magisterial doctrine.

Francis

Quote A

Teachings of the Magisterium

Enter in the various parts of our study

ContentsAuthors
I – Catechesis is necessary for the actuation of the Holy Spirit in the Church
II – Pastors cannot forego catechesis, confiding that the faithful will learn of the mysteries of the faith by themselves
III – Catecheses may not be compared to Yoga or Zen, which are in reality practices contrary to religion
IV – The essential objective of catechesis is the transmission of the mystery of Christ. Its importance in the Church cannot be underestimated

I – Catechesis is necessary for the actuation of the Holy Spirit in the Church


Leo XIII

The impulses of the Holy Spirit are for the most part felt through the aid and light of the external teaching authority: the Church

John Paul II

Catechesis is a work of the Holy Spirit - a work that He alone initiates and sustains in the Church
Catechesis gives growth to the seed of faith sown by the Holy Spirit

CELAM

The action of the Spirit deepens in catechesis

Congregation for the Clergy

The Church, animated by the Holy Spirit, is sent to be the teacher of the faith
The Spirit causes the Church to grow and sustains her in proclaiming the Gospel

II –Pastors cannot forego catechesis, confiding that the faithful will learn of the mysteries of the faith by themselves


Code of Canon Law

It is a grave duty of pastors to take care of catechesis

Pius X

The first duty of all who are entrusted with government of the Church is to instruct the faithful in the things of God
The Christian has faith, but requires teaching to develop it and make it bear fruit
A great loss of souls is due to ignorance of divine things

John Paul II

The Church has always considered catechesis one of her primary tasks
Catechesis: a sacred duty and an inalienable right

Vatican Council II (Ecumenical XXI)

Christians have a right to a Christian education, to strive for the growth of the Mystical Body
The faith, illumined by teaching, is an effective force in the lives of men

Leo XIII

The multitudes must be drawn to diligently learn the precepts of religion

Congregation for the Clergy

Catechesis must lead to the gradual grasping of the whole truth about the divine plan

III – Catecheses may not be compared to Yoga or Zen, which are in reality practices contrary to religion


Sacred Scripture

Compared to the supreme good of knowing Christ, all is waste

Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith

The danger of fusing Christian meditation with eastern methods of ‘meditation’: abandoning the idea of the One and Triune God

Synod of Bishops

Catechesis is an adequate response to the growing influence of sects and new religious movements

John Paul II

To sow confusion and uncertainty among Catholics: amalgamating Christian elements with others from Eastern religions and psychological techniques

48th International Eucharistic Congress

Syncretism in looking for life from the side of death

Saint Augustine of Hippo

Regarding all these branches of knowledge we must fear and shun the fellowship of demons

IV – The essential objective of catechesis is the transmission of the mystery of Christ. Its importance in the Church cannot be underestimated


Saint Thomas Aquinas

Man’s whole salvation depends upon the knowledge of divine truths

Catechism of Saint Pius X

Catechesis: We receive the doctrine that Jesus Christ taught and committed to his Apostles from the Holy Catholic Church

Congregation for the Clergy

Catechesis seeks to solidify and mature the first adherence to Christ

John Paul II

The primary and essential object of catechesis is the mystery of Christ

Vatican Council II (Ecumenical XXI)

The words of revelation clarify the mystery contained in them

Sacred Scripture

Christ commands the disciples to preach
Our Savior wills everyone to be saved and to come to knowledge of the truth
Faith comes from what is heard

Discover another innovation:

Can anyone be a Godparent of a baptized? What does the Church think on this?

 

 

 

Leave a Reply