Penance and Spirituality

Penance and Spirituality | Do penance and spirituality go hand-in-hand? In this episode, Father David talks about the necessity of understanding that all hardships in life are worth learning from and ways to increase your love of all things holy. | #podcast #christianpodcast #Christianity #Christian #Spirituality #Christianfaith #penancePenance and Spirituality – Episode 23

Do penance and spirituality go hand-in-hand? In this episode, Father David talks about the necessity of understanding that all hardships in life are worth learning from and ways to increase your love of all things holy.

Look for Father David’s book  Evangelizing Catholic Culture: A New Vision For A New Creation on Amazon here.

Merciful Penitential Spirituality

Introduction: As I begin preparation for this “show” or podcast presentation on the topic of “Penitential Spirituality”, my mind is full of the many things which the President of Franciscan University just presented to the University community regarding necessary action in relation to the coronavirus pandemic for a specific action. For example, the closing of all public Masses until a later date.

This worldwide pandemic and its subsequent consequences are a major crisis for humanity. The impact is affecting everything in our way of life. This afternoon I spent a bit of time reviewing some of the major and minor Prophets words to the people when they had violated the Covenant by rebellion and social injustice. At some point, God seemed to say that it is enough! And he usually allowed major devastation to occur in the Nation. In other words, the people came under judgment! These were generally very painful and destructive periods in the life of the Nation. This chaos would last until the people realized their sin and commenced to do significant social and individual repentance. Yahweh would then forgive them, and then pour out his abundant mercy upon them. However, formal communal and individual public repentance had to come first. I cannot help wondering if the whole of present humanity has not come under God’s judgment because of the horrendous sins of the Nation and Humankind.

What does scripture say about penance and spirituality?

“I urge you therefore, brothers and sister, by the mercies of God, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, your spiritual worship. Do not conform yourselves to this age, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern or know (what is the will of God, what is good, and pleasing and perfect. (Rom. 12:1-2)

Turn back to the Lord and do penance (Lent). Doing penance is being renewed in mind, heart, and spirit. Penance is a wonderful and beautiful grace that brings the Father’s mercy and the transforming power of the Spirit of God into our minds and hearts.

The beautiful graces of God’s abundant mercy are the first part of the story. However, the second part of the story is the experience of Divine love in our hearts, which enables us to generously to the power of the Cross of Jesus by our corporation and participation in this dynamic grace of this transforming union. By living a penitential life, we make up by our love, responding generously to all that God has done for us. Our goal in being merciful penitents is to live in Christ the life of the New Creation. It is all about a way of life called love. These tremendous graces generate an experience of Spirit-filled love and life-giving repentance as merciful penitents. We make up for what is lacking in the Body of Christ.

The spirituality of being merciful penitents opens the door for us to treasure each suffering and trial in the present moment, thanking the Lord for what he places before us, and gives us the strength to enter into the sufferings of Jesus, because we are living in the Eternal perspective. Many times we see our sufferings vanishing, and only love remains in the soul.

To unite our suffering to his means to enter his own dynamic of suffering love—sharing in his light, and, strength, and peace. It means to discover within us a new and abundant presence of God. To unite every suffering with Christ on the Cross means to become one with him and in him, instruments and unique gifts of saving love, by leading others whom we serve with his mercy into the Kingdom. For those called to a penitential way of life, there is a special gift of grace one is given called Crucified Love and Mercy, an empowered penitent in the New Creation—it consists of a penitent’s power, life, and wisdom for loving and serving others. These gifts of grace flow from the Father’s heart through the pierced Heart of Christ. These rivers of grace-filled mercy make us fruitful merciful penitents living in a time of spiritual renewal and reform.

 

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