Saturday, March 13, 2004

Steps to Authentic Reform: St. Paul

Frequently in the New Testament, St. Paul and others commend us to imitate their faith and their behavior. For example, in 2nd Thessalonians, you find this: "For you know how one must imitate us. For we did not act in a disorderly way among you, nor did we eat food received free from anyone. On the contrary, in toil and drudgery, night and day we worked, so as not to burden any of you. Not that we do not have the right. Rather, we wanted to present ourselves as a model for you, so that you might imitate us. [2 Th 3:7-9]" Or see this from the Letter to the Hebrews: "Remember your leaders who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith [Heb 13:7]." One last citation. Look at this from the 3rd Letter of John: "Beloved, do not imitate evil but imitate good. Whoever does what is good is of God; whoever does what is evil has never seen God[3 John 1:11]."

Living the faith well is not something we have to invent on our own. We can take from a great cloud of witnesses the example of their lives and make application to ours.

Step Two: Befriend a Saint. How does one befriend a saint? Here's how. First, get know some saints. Read their biographies and read and pray some of the prayers they composed. Second, once you find a couple of particular saints, regularly ask for their intercession on certain matters. Third, practice the virtues in the way that they did. Take a direct cue but adapt it for today.

Cancer runs rampant because it convinces other cells to malfunction, or at least, that is the theory. The Church is a Body and each of us a living stone, or said another way, cells within the body. Are you a cell that will be easily swayed to become cancerous? Let the saints fortify you against all destructive forces.

And to get you started, here are two who still influence me greatly: and

No comments: