Keeping Faith

There has been a lot of comment on the Pope’s Memo regarding the Year of Faith (2012). Some of it has reminded me how grateful I am that this blog has never, as far as I know, become a battleground for conservatives and liberals, never ‘Catholic’ in the narrowly partisan sense, but has always been enriched by contributions from many differing Christian and non-Christian traditions. Yet I trust that no one reading it would have the slightest doubt that I write as a Catholic, from a Catholic perspective born of study of scripture and the Fathers and that immersion in prayer which is at the heart of monastic life. Some, I know, would prefer to see a more overtly theological stance or more explicit discussion of liturgy, but I think I can safely leave that to others. I am more concerned with the foothills of Christian living, and for that reason I am looking forward to what the coming year will bring.

The Year of Faith promises much, but if there is one aspect I would want to emphasize, it is this. All theological disciplines, every attempt to articulate or express faith, should begin, and end, in prayer. Only prayer can keep us centred on Christ and in charity with one another, because only prayer can enable us to face the truth of God and of ourselves. No one, having seen him- or herself for what he or she truly is, could ever despise or disparage another. The Year of Faith is not an opportunity for neighbour-bashing in the name of religion but for learning how much further we each have to go to realise our vocation of holiness. Keeping faith will also keep us humble.

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10 thoughts on “Keeping Faith”

  1. “All theological disciplines, every attempt to articulate or express faith, should begin, and end, in prayer.”

    SO true. Over the last month I have been amazed by the difference prayer makes to my personal walk – even when the pray-er has such small faith as me. Long way to go still, though.

  2. The Holy Father always hits the nail squarely on the head, and the proposal of a year of Faith is just what the world needs right now. This is includes practising, lapsed and indicisive Catholic Christians. I read the report on the Zenit newspaper site and am enthralled and excited to go back and read it again for more detail.
    Thank you for your New Evangilisation, and a blog that is most certainly a breath of fresh air.

  3. A concise, pointed post today. Short, but oh, so sweet in its wisdom. It speaks well to the practice of prayer, of contemplation and the distillation of thought and meaning carried on the briefest of words born I imagine of the practice of monastic silence. And other gifts…

    Each reader will draw from this post according to his/her experience, need or journey. To mention one point over another may seem to mark it as most important somehow. But not so. We only signal what one responds to in this moment. For me, today, I am near struck dumb by the following, which will serve not only as meditation for today, but for much of time to come:

    “No one, having seen him- or herself for what he or she truly is, could ever despise or disparage another.”

    Oftentimes, I know, that the depth of meaning and content surpasses my ability to grasp, but there is nevertheless always something that edifies, even for such a one as me. With gratitude.

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